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Follow Up: Hospital Fined $300K For Leaving Drill Bit In Patient

Wed, 10/27/2010 - 6:35am

Rhode Island officials have ordered the state's largest hospital to pay a $300,000 fine, the largest in state history, after operating room staff left a broken drill bit in a patient's skull during brain surgery.

State health officials on Tuesday said Rhode Island Hospital did not follow its own policy, which requires staff to do an X-ray of a patient if a surgical tool or device is missing at the end of a surgery.

Health department spokeswoman Annemarie Beardsworth says the hospital has also admitted a separate error from a July procedure in which a pair of forceps was left in a patient's abdomen.

Rhode Island Hospital CEO Timothy Babineau said in a statement that the mistakes are unacceptable and that the hospital is working to prevent similar errors in the future.

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