This is an update on the continuing investigation of what happened and caused the Philadelphia VA treatments to be stopped.  What is sad too is imagethat even after it was plugged back in to do the calculations, some procedures and treatments still did not include the calculated information that leads to placement of the seeds. 

V.A. Hospital in Philadelphia Prostate Cancer Seeding Surgeries Botched

The procedure is called brachytherapy and is also used for treatment of breast cancer.  In June of 2008, the unit was shut down.  What I wonder about is what other medical device was connected that required the PC to be off the network.  The VA also has this ongoing investigation regarding sterilization of equipment for colonoscopies:

V.A. Hospital Patients Test Positive for Hepatitis – 18 So Far – Colonoscopy Tests with equipment not properly disinfected

It is no wonder that the demand has come down to insure that all their projects are going to be required to use the business intelligence portals.  If technology is not used today, people can get hurt in the healing processes, education still has a long way to go.  BD 

For a year, starting in November 2006, the computer workstation with the software used to calculate the post-implant dosages was unplugged from the hospital's network.

All that time, no one took steps to plug it back in, work around it, or tell patient-safety officials, investigators found.

As a result, post-implant calculations weren't performed during that period for Armstrong and 15 other patients, according to the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, which oversees medical use of radiation.

Even after the computer was finally reconnected to the network, investigators discovered, post-implant calculations continued to be omitted for an additional seven patients.  The computer was initially unplugged so that another medical device could use the network port. Then, various departments dithered and ducked a request for an additional network port, which was finally installed - after a year.

VA radiation errors laid to offline computer | Philadelphia Inquirer | 07/19/2009

Hat Tip:  HIStalk

Related Reading:

VA Halts 45 I.T. Projects and Will Be Required to Use Business Intelligence by Next Year

Surgeries at Illinois hospital months off at the VA Hospital in Illinois


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