Was the patient data manipulated? Hamburg clinic threatens large organ donation scandal
According to media reports, Hamburg doctors are said to have manipulated data from patients so that they reach a donor organ more quickly. In 14 cases, irregularities had been detected. The clinic rejects the allegations. Meanwhile, the Hamburg prosecutor has initiated investigations.
Serious allegations against Hamburg clinic
According to a report of the "NDR" serious charges are made against the University Hospital Hamburg-Eppendorf (UKE). It is said that there is a suspicion that data from 14 lung patients were given incorrectly to give the patient faster access to a donor organ. According to the information, the UKE is working together with the LungenClinic Großhansdorf in a lung transplantation program. According to "NDR", extensive original files of the patients have disappeared.
Investigations for file suppression
The public prosecutor Hamburg determined after information of the NDR policy magazine "Panorama 3" in the two clinics because of "file suppression".
The criminal investigations were apparently triggered by a report from a monitoring committee, which reviewed the Hamburg "lung transplantation program" last year.
The UKE wrote in a press release: "The Examination and Supervision Commission, which is supported by the German Medical Association, GKV-Spitzenverband and Deutscher Krankenhausgesellschaft to control compliance with the Transplantation Act, has been included in the routine examinations of the lung transplantation program of the University Medical Center Hamburg-Eppendorf (UKE). , in which the LungenClinic Großhansdorf is involved, complains of abnormalities for the years 2010 to 2012. "
Irregularities in 14 cases
"In 14 out of 25 cases examined, the Commission complained of irregularities, including medical data and their documentation," it said.
The state of health of the lung patients was shown to be worse than it actually was. According to the report, the physicians in applications to the agency "Eurotransplant" on donations for their patients in some cases values that indicate a life-threatening condition.
Patients should appear to be on the waiting list and come to a donated lung more quickly as "high-urgency cases".
Files are no longer findable
In addition, the inspectors described the fact that the original files were largely "untraceable" as "quite extraordinary"..
In its report of 27 September 2016, it states, for example: "To the undetectability of the medical records of patients treated in Großhansdorf, the doctors in charge said that the files had been given when relocating their patients for transplantation in the UKE, but there are no longer findable and also not returned. Despite repeated and urgent requests from the commissions to intensively research the whereabouts of the files in both the LungenClinic and the UKE, the original documents could not be made available until now. "
Systematic misconduct of doctors
"The missing documents (...) justify the suspicion that in this way systematic misconduct of the physicians involved should be prevented from discovery," says the investigation report. Torsten Verrel, Professor of Criminal Law at the University of Bonn and Member of the Supervision Commission, explained the spicy language of the report in an interview with "Panorama 3", "We wanted to make it very clear in the report how unique the process is.".
The UKE rejects the allegations and writes in its statement of 13 October: "The UKE in cooperation with the LungenClinic Großhansdorf recognizes legitimate criticisms from the audit report, but emphasizes that there is no evidence for intervention in the ranking of patients on the transplant list gives."
Organ donation numbers dropped dramatically
As early as 2012, an affair involving manipulated patient data shook transplantation medicine in Germany. At that time, it became known that a physician at Göttingen University Hospital had falsified medical records to allow selected patients a faster supply of donor organs. Gradually, further scandals were revealed, including in Munich, Regensburg and Leipzig.
As a result of organ donation scandals organ donor numbers in Germany had plummeted dramatically. Figures from the German Foundation for Organ Transplantation (DSO) show that in 2013 only 876 people who died had donated organs. Compared to the last 23 years, this represents a new negative national record. (Ad)