Mackay Hospital doctor suspended amid alleged malpractice probe

A Queensland doctor has been suspended amid a clinical probe of Mackay Hospital following complaints from women about complications from caesareans and suggestions of patient harm.

Oct 13, 2021, updated Oct 13, 2021

Mackay Hospital and Health Services chief executive Lisa Davies Jones commissioned the investigation after patient advocate Beryl Crosby contacted her with concerns.

Health Minister Yvette D’Ath said at least one doctor at Mackay Base Hospital had been stood down amid the probe.

“I have also advised that there is one doctor that has been suspended and I’m not aware of any suspicion in relation to that,” she told parliament on Wednesday.

Ms Davies Jones is seeking an independent expert through the Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists to head the review.

In the meantime, Mackay HHS has set up a hotline for patients or their families to raise their concerns.

“It is important that you contact us directly so your concerns can be investigated and addressed,” Davies Jones said.

“Any feedback about patient care is taken seriously and we undertake to provide a response to consumers who raise matters with us.”

The review comes amid another probe into alleged malpractice at the Caboolture Hospital launched last month.

That inquiry, headed by eminent South Australian surgeon James Sweeney, was due to finish on Monday but will now conclude on October 25.

The review was ordered after the opposition LNP aired claims of preventable deaths, surgical negligence, and a culture of bullying at the hospital north of Brisbane.

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Metro North Health chair Jim McGowan said the inquiry had already interviewed a number of patients and staff.

Since August 31, there have been 93 calls to a hotline set up for people to report their care and treatment at Caboolture Hospital.

LNP health spokeswoman Ros Bates said on Tuesday the two inquiries showed the state’s health crisis was deepening amid ongoing issues with capacity and ambulance ramping.

“First it was Caboolture, now it’s Mackay,” Ms Bates said on Tuesday.

“Two major hospitals are now at the centre of shocking allegations which are now under review.

The nurse and former hospital administrator said patient care must be the top priority.

“All Queenslanders deserve a world-class health system no matter where they live and I’d encourage Queenslanders to tell their stories.”

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