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Jail terms handed down in deadly medical incident
The Saigon Times Daily
Thursday,  Jan 31, 2019,21:51 (GMT+7)

Jail terms handed down in deadly medical incident

The Saigon Times Daily

Defendants at the court - PHOTO: VNA

HCMC - The People’s Court of the northern province of Hoa Binh on January 30 announced jail sentences to seven individuals involved in a serious medical incident that killed nine patients at the provincial General Hospital on May 29, 2017, the local media reported.

Accordingly, Bui Manh Quoc, director of Tram Anh Water Treatment Co., Ltd, who committed violations in repairing the reverse osmosis (RO) water filter system of dialysis machines at the hospital, leading to the deaths, will have to serve 54 months in prison for manslaughter.

Doctor Hoang Cong Luong, who took the main responsibility for the treatment for the kidney patients, was sentenced to 42 months in jail for the same charge as Quoc.

The court also handed down prison sentences of 30 months on former director of Hoa Binh General Hospital Truong Quy Duong and director of Thien Son JSC Do Anh Tuan; 36 months on Hoang Dinh Khieu, deputy director of Hoa Binh General Hospital and head of the hospital’s department of intensive care, and Tran Van Thang, head of the medical material and equipment department; and 42 months on Tran Van Son, an employee of the medical material and equipment department, for their irresponsibility, causing serious consequences.

Additionally, the hospital and Thien Son JSC must compensate the families of ill-fated victims with a respective rate of 70% and 30%.

The court also asked the provincial People’s Procuracy to prosecute Hoang Cong Tinh, deputy head of Hoa Binh General Hospital’s department of intensive care for his involvement in the case. He was accused of lacking of responsibility, causing serious consequences.

On May 25, 2017, Thien Son JSC signed a contract with Hoa Binh General Hospital to repair and maintain the RO water filter system at the hospital. However, the firm later transferred the contract to Tram Anh Water Treatment Co., Ltd.

On May 29, eighteen patients suffering from chronic renal failure had anaphylactic reactions while receiving dialysis treatment at Hoa Binh General Hospital and nine of them died. The deaths were found to result from water being contaminated in the process of repairing the RO water filters of the dialysis treatment system.

Quoc had used chemicals which the Ministry of Health does not allow for use in pasteurization to repair the RO water filter system of dialysis machines at Hoa Binh General Hospital. Also, he did not purify carefully water supply tubes, leaving chemical residues, and did not check the water quality before handing over the system to the hospital.

Meanwhile, nephrologist Luong was aware of the importance of the quality of water used for the dialysis treatment and the repair of the RO water filter system at the hospital. However, he used the system in the dialysis treatment without checking the water quality.

As for Duong, he must be responsible for the hospital’s overall operations. He had signed contracts on the repair of the RO water filter system with Tram Anh Water Treatment Co., Ltd.

Son, who was in charge of supervising the repair of the filter system, failed to fulfill his tasks.

Tuan, Khieu and Thang were charged with mismanagement, resulting in serious consequences.

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