Posted : 2012-12-14 17:12
Updated : 2012-12-14 17:12

1 out of 10 inpatients wrongly diagnosed: survey

A 32-year-old man got embarrassed when he received surgery on his left knee injured at the workplace at a joint hospital in Cheongju, North Chungcheong Province, last May. When awakened from his anesthesia, he found his both knees in casts. The surgeon also operated for his left knee later after mistakenly performing surgery on his right one. The hospital side said, "The right knee also needed surgery. It's all the better." Lee has in legal battle, lodging a suit against the hospital for being negligent in his job.

A 41-year-old Gang died in two weeks after starting anti-cancer treatment upon medical check that he was in his early stage of malignant lymphoma at an Incheon hospital last September. This was because a medical trainee injected spine cord-melting anti-cancer, Vincristine, into the spine cord, not vein. There was also a similar report from a hospital in North Gyeongsang Province two years ago that a male baby was killed due to injection of the anti-cancer substance.

One out of 10 inpatients had their illness wrongly diagnosed from medical doctors, according to a survey conducted by the Korea Health & Medical Workers' Union and a nationwide patients group, the Korea Federation of Patients Associations.

The survey for 540 inpatients showed Thursday that 9.8 percent of the questioned replied that they experienced wrong diagnosis. The wrong diagnoses were diverse, ranging from clear misjudgement of disease names to terminal case as early stage symptom.

As many as 3.7 percent experienced wrong injection which might give serious damage, 0.9 percent received wrong type of blood and 2.2 percent got infected at hospitals with the figure higher at 2.9 percent at larger hospitals in number of patient beds and medical staff.

Injuries from slippery to the ground in hospitals account for 5.5 percent and bedsores caused by negligence of nurses or caregivers account for 3.7 percent. As many as 5.3 percent replied that they were damaged due to wrong communications with medical doctors with the figure at 7.1 percent at general hospitals.

Waiting time is long, while treatment time is small. As many as 98.9 percent of patients at higher general hospitals and 87.8 percent at general hospitals waited for more than 10 minutes, while 68.4 percent and 52 percent at respective hospitals received medical consultations for less than five minutes.

관련 한글 기사

"수술 뒤 깨어나보니…" 섬뜩한 증언

지난 5월 충북 청주의 한 관절전문병원에 입원했던 이모(32)씨는 작업 중 왼쪽 무릎을 다쳐 수술대에 올랐다가 황당한 경우를 겪었다. 마취에서 깨어보니 양쪽 무릎에 깁스가 돼 있었다. 의사가 멀쩡한 오른쪽 무릎을 수술한 뒤 뒤늦게 실수를 발견하고 왼쪽 무릎을 수술한 것. 병원 측은 실수는 인정했지만 '오른쪽 무릎도 수술이 필요했다. 오히려 잘됐다'고 변명했다. 이씨는 업무상 과실혐의로 병원을 고소한 상태다.

악성림프종 2기(초기) 진단을 받고 지난 9월 인천의 한 병원에 입원했던 강모(41)씨도 항암치료를 받던 중 2주만에 사망했다. 전공의가 척수를 녹이는 항암제 '빈크리스틴'을 정맥이 아닌 척수에 투입한 탓이다. 2년 전 경북의 한 병원에서도 빈크리스틴 투입한 남아의 사망사고가 발생한 적이 있다.

입원 환자 10명 중 1명이 의사의 질병 진단 오류를 경험한 것으로 조사되는 등 병원 안에서 환자의 안전이 위협받고 있다. 13일 전국보건의료노조와 한국환자단체연합회가 입원환자 540명을 대상으로 한 설문조사에 따르면 환자의 9.8%가 의사의 진단 오류를 경험했다. 병명을 잘못 진단하는 명백한 오진부터, 말기증상을 초기증상으로 판단하는 오류까지 다양했다.

자칫하면 심각한 피해를 줄 수 있는 투약사고 경험은 3.7%, 혈액형이 바뀌는 수혈사고도 0.9%였다. 병원 내 감염은 2.2%였는데 병상 수와 의료인력이 많은 상급종합병원(2.9%)일수록 심했다.

병원 내에서 미끄러지는 낙상사고는 5.5%나 됐고, 간호사나 간병인의 관리 소홀로 욕창(褥瘡)이 발생하는 사례는 3.7%였다. 의사간 잘못된 의사소통으로 피해를 입었다는 응답자는 5.3%였는데, 종합병원의 경우 7.1%에 달했다.

또 대기시간은 길고, 진료시간은 지나치게 짧았다. 상급종합병원 환자의 98.9%, 종합병원 환자의 87.8%가 20분 이상 대기했고, 5분 내에 진료를 마쳤다는 응답자는 각각 68.4%, 52%였다.

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