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X Rays: Maladministration

Volume 474: debated on Thursday 3 April 2008

To ask the Secretary of State for Health what estimate his Department has made of the number of people who have been mistakenly sent for x-rays or CT scans in each English region in each of the last five years. (195563)

The requested information for the period between 1 January 2003 and 31 October 2006 is shown in the following table.

Number of incidents notified under Ionising Radiation (Medical Exposure) Regulations (IRMER) 2000 to Secretary of States’ Inspectors which were classified as patient identification (ID) and referral errors from 1 January 2003 to 31 October 2006

Region

Eastern

London

North West

North Yorkshire

South East

South West

Trent

West Midlands

CT

X-ray

CT

X-ray

CT

X-ray

CT

X-ray

CT

X-ray

CT

X-ray

CT

X-ray

CT

X-ray

2003

1

0

3

0

4

4

2

5

2

8

1

1

1

3

4

0

2004

0

0

1

2

1

1

4

1

5

9

2

0

1

7

2

4

2005

0

1

1

0

2

0

1

4

4

6

1

5

1

3

1

1

2006

0

1

0

2

1

1

1

2

5

5

0

2

0

0

0

4

From 1 November 2006 the Healthcare Commission assumed responsibility for enforcement of the (IRMER) 2000 in the Amendment Regulations of 2006.

In March 2008 the Healthcare Commission published the first report on its activities in this area this included an analysis of the errors that led to patients being exposed unnecessarily to medical radiation.

From 1 November 2006 to 31 December 2007 there were 105 notifications of errors in the referral of patients for diagnostic x-ray, CT scan and other diagnostic radiology investigation.

The following table provides a breakdown by strategic health authority (SHA) area of notifications received from national health service trusts.

Breakdown by SHA area of diagnostic patient ID error

SHA

Diagnostic patient ID error

Independent Healthcare

1

East of England SHA

8

London SHA

12

North East SHA

4

North West SHA

8

South Central SHA

9

South East Coast SHA

11

South West SHA

8

West Midlands SHA

30

Yorkshire and the Humber SHA

14

Total

105