Four Corners - First Do No Harm
How do you know if you can trust your doctor? It's been the ultimate insider's secret, the doctor you would never let near your own family or friends. Public confidence in Australia’s health systems has been shaken by a series of hospital scandals. Chris Masters details the case of yet another unsafe doctor and the whistleblower who sacrificed his career in the interest of his patients.
The doctor who spoke up and forced the authorities to investigate reveals his identity and tells his story. He explains why he became concerned for the safety of hospital patients, how he tried to alert the authorities for years and the high price he has paid for taking on a very senior member of the medical profession. The reports tells of a secret operation to repair a mistake made in an earlier surgical procedure, inappropriate medical procedures that led to permanent disabilities and of poor record keeping that allowed the problems to go on undetected.
But as the program makes clear, it is not only the skills of individual doctors that are to blame. This case, along with the other hospital scandals, shows what can happen when hospitals and health services fail to implement practices that protect patients and provide for the oversight of doctors, no matter how senior they are.
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