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Doctor took out wrong kidney

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Three investigations are underway after allegations a Queensland doctor took the wrong kidney out during a surgery.

Queensland Health Minister Lawrence Springborg announced three separate investigations into the botched surgery practices of a Spanish-trained doctor at Rockhampton Hospital.

Local paper The Morning Bulletin reported surgeon Antonio Vega Vega was stood down and his rights to practice taken away last week after the allegations he performed incorrect surgery on a patient earlier this year.

The surgeon was required to remove the patient’s left kidney; instead he removed the right one.

Queensland Health says Dr Vega Vega trained in Spain was an urologist, a specialty that deals with diseases of the urinary tract.

He came to Australia for two years further training and gained Australian qualifications in 2011.

The Central Queensland Hospital and Health Board has now launched a further three investigations after four more botched surgeries stretching back to 2011 came to light.

Board chairman Charles Ware says in one of those cases, a patient had to be flown to Brisbane for post-operative treatment.

“It would appear that an artery was nicked during surgery but not detected, and he was later re-presented to hospital with quite substantial blood loss,” Mr Ware said.

“He came back to hospital with the loss of three litres of blood, so he was in a bad way.

“Now he is safe and he’s been transported to Brisbane.

“He was beyond the capacity of our hospital in Rockhampton to look after him.”

Mr Springborg told State Parliament that the central Queensland Hospital and Health Service Board is confronting issues that arise from an unacceptable and worrying case of failed renal surgery early this year.

“Systems to protect patients from botched surgery are fundamental to clinical practice.”

He also confirmed that two senior administrators from the hospital had been stood down.

“The Central Queensland Board has terminated the appointment of the Acting Executive Director of Medical Services and suspended the appointment of the Director of Surgery at Rockhampton Hospital,” he said.

“This comes on top of its decision late last week to stand aside a surgeon involved in the incident.”