KGH apologises for medication blunder as another 'never event' recorded

Four medical mistakes which should 'never' happen have now taken place there in 2021

Thursday, 30th September 2021, 7:20 am
Kettering General Hospital has apologised.

Kettering General Hospital has apologised to a patient after mixing up their medication and administering it the wrong way.

The patient was at the Rothwell Road hospital in August when they needed medication which should have been taken orally.

But hospital staff wrongly gave them the dose through a peripherally inserted central catheter, a thin tube inserted into a vein for longer-term intravenous medication administration. Intravenous medication was also given orally and an investigation is now under way.

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The blunder has now been declared a serious incident by hospital bosses and recorded as a 'never event', the kind of mistake which should never happen.

KGH say immediate treatment was given and the patient has, to date, suffered no serious detriment.

Kettering General Hospital’s chief executive, Deborah Needham, said: “We have sincerely apologised to the patient involved and we are investigating this incident in line with national good practice.

"We are working closely with the staff and the patient involved to address any concerns and take any appropriate action needed.”

In 2019 the Healthcare Safety Investigation Branch published a report with a series of recommendations after a similar mistake involving a nine-year-old child at another NHS hospital

In their report they said most medication errors cause little or no harm, but they demonstrate failures in the system that do or have the potential to cause fatal errors and need to be corrected to protect patients.

The KGH incident last month is the fourth 'never event' to take place there in 2021. KGH's target is to have zero, having had none in 2020.

Then, in August, we reported that another 'never event' in ophthalmology resulted in a patient being given an eye injection based on another person's scans, which were wrongly labelled with their details.

The first 2021 incident took place in February when a patient inadvertently connected their oxygen tubing to the medical air flow meter.