Two surgeons have been suspended by the Kampong Cham provincial health department after being found responsible for leaving a handkerchief in a woman’s belly during a caesarean section last year.
Dim Srey Mom, 35, a teacher at Peam Chi Kang High School in Kampong Cham province’s Kang Meas district, delivered her first child on October 25, but had repeated stomach pains following the surgery at the provincial hospital.
Ms Srey Mom then decided to have surgery again at a private clinic in Phnom Penh on January 19 where a handkerchief was discovered in her belly. She was then admitted to Calmette Hospital for further care while the Medical Council of Cambodia issued a statement saying an investigation into the case was launched in order to penalise the doctors responsible for the malpractice.
“The Medical Council of Cambodian is organising medical specialists to conduct a thorough study of this incident,” the statement issued last week said.
Kim Sour Phirun, head of the provincial health department, said yesterday that the investigation had resulted in the suspension of two doctors responsible for the serious professional misconduct.
“We have punished the doctors who neglected their duties at the provincial health department’s surgical facility and suspended them indefinitely,” he said.
Mr Sour Phirun said he regretted the medical team had made such a mistake, adding he had since held a meeting to advise doctors to pay more attention and be more vigilant when treating patients in order to avoid future mistakes.
“Not only surgical treatments, but medical teams in all departments as well as specialists must work rigorously and responsibly,” he said.
Reached by phone yesterday, Ms Srey Mom said that after she gave birth, she had repeated stomach pains following every day for more than three months.
Ms Srey Mom said she has returned to her hometown in Kang Meas district’s Peam Chi Kang commune after about a 10-day stay in Calmette Hospital.
“My health has been improving on a day-to-day basis since I was hospitalised at Calmette Hospital as they monitored my condition and treated my wound very well,” she said.
Ms Srey Mom added she and her family would not sue the doctors who performed the C-section, saying she only wanted her health back.
“Most importantly, I want other doctors to pay more attention during surgery or while treating patients, because people that go to the hospital want good health. I regret that I had such a problem,” she said.
Ms Srey Mom had previously received $5,000 in compensation from the provincial hospital while an additional $1,250 was provided by the provincial governor for her to travel to Phnom Penh for medical treatment.
All fees incurred at Calmette Hospital were taken care by Prime Minister Hun Sen’s wife Bun Rany.