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Friday 28th October 2016

Breast cancer test errors

9th October 2012

Monitor, the hospital watchdog, has identified issues relating to breast cancer tests and treatment at the King's Mill Hospital in Nottinghamshire.


The watchdog found problems in "faulty tissues tests" at the hospital in Sutton-in-Ashfield which meant around 50% of patients tested were not given the correct treatment.

The Care Quality Commission (CQC) has said it will also carry out a wider review of Sherwood Forest Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, which manages the hospital.

The hospital has recalled 79 women who were tested between 2004-2010.

The Oestrogen Receptor Test is used to find out if patients can be given hormone treatment for breast cancer.

The watchdog said 120 women were given "false negative" results from the test. Some of the women seen between 2006-2010 have died but it is unclear whether this is because of the test errors or not.

Trust medical director Dr Nabeel Ali said: "About half the women affected would have been offered different treatment had we known the correct result."

"Those women would have experienced a 5% increased mortality rate over 10 years from their breast cancer." 

Stephen Hay, the Monitor spokesman, said: "We are using our formal regulatory powers of intervention because we are concerned the trust has failed to get to grips with the scale of the problems it faces."

"Our concern about its leadership has been heightened by the disclosure that some breast cancer patients are to receive an apology from the trust and an urgent review of their treatment after an investigation into faulty pathology test results." 


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