Surgeon is 'fired after mistakenly carrying out a vasectomy'

Incident was one of two 'never events' at Liverpool Hospital

A surgeon has been fired after mistakenly carrying out a vasectomy on a patient, according to a report.

The incident was one of two “never events” – mistakes that are not supposed to happen – that occurred at Broadgreen Hospital in Liverpool, according to the city’s Echo newspaper.

Dr Peter Williams, medical director at Royal Liverpool and Broadgreen University Hospitals NHS Trust, said: “In the last 12 months, three serious incidents and two never events occurred in our urology department and these were reported to the appropriate bodies.

“We are still in the process of investigating some of these incidents, including looking at how to improve the processes and systems in place and are taking appropriate action. We cannot comment on the outcomes of these investigations at this stage.

“Patient safety is always our priority and we use the lessons learnt from any incident to continually improve our standard of care.”

He added that the hospital’s urology department dealt with more than 4,000 patients a year.

“The vast majority of feedback from these patients is overwhelmingly positive,” he added.

Video: Jeremy Hunt vows to improve UK hospital safety

The Echo said it understood that an operation to reverse the vasectomy had not worked and he would not now be able to have children naturally.

Ian Cohen, a clinical negligence lawyer, said the man could be paid more than £100,000 in compensation, depending on his age and other factors.

“If a 25-year-old who wants a family is told he won’t be able to father children it will be devastating,” he said.

“In a case like this where the hospital has said it’s made a mistake the NHS Litigation Authority (LA) should encourage the hospital to hold its hands up.”

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