In many cases, receiving an organ transplant can mean the difference between life and death for a patient. Doctors and hospitals have worked hard to establish guidelines for these types of operations to ensure that they are conducted as safely as possible. A hospital in Toledo, however, is facing scrutiny from both health officials and a consulting surgeon after a mistake involving a donated kidney.
Just a few weeks ago, the University of Toledo Medical Center put its transplant program on hold after officials discovered that a donated kidney had been placed with medical waste rather than going to its intended recipient. An investigation is ongoing and, so far, it is unclear how a five-person surgical team committed the error, which rendered the organ unusable.
Although no one was harmed by the error, it is an important reminder that mistakes do happen in the operating room, despite checklists and other sophisticated systems designed to prevent them.
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Source: Associated Press, “Surgeon, officials review Ohio kidney transplant mistake; program on hold, may affect hundreds,” Kantele Franko.