Surgeon operates with the wrong images as loaded by staff manually. Technology with having the data link versus relying on human hands to load the disc could have been a real help. BD
With her body still aching from triple bypass surgery, Sandy Baumgartner lay in a hospital bed talking with a nurse about her care.
In the same room at Memorial Medical Center, her surgeon was talking with her husband about something unusual that had happened during the surgery a few days earlier.
Her husband, Gary Baumgartner, couldn't believe what he was hearing. The surgeon said he had operated on his wife while using a different patient's angiogram films.
At Memorial, the pictures are put on discs in the cath lab and must be hand-delivered to the operating room. The patient's name appears on the films when they're opened on the computer.
According to Baumgartner, a hospital representative told her a catheterization lab employee had burned two discs of the other patient's angiogram and mistakenly put her name on the cover of one disc.
Fung wrote on the medical record of Baumgartner's surgery that the films of "a different patient had been loaded onto the computer."
In comparison, surgeons at Doctors Medical Center can access angiogram films from computers in the operating room. The surgeons click on the patient's name to call up the films.
A surgeon would have to click on the wrong name to make a mistake.
"Every frame of the film has a patient identity on it," said Debbie Fuller, chief information officer at Doctors.