| ||Inquiry ordered after hospital patients exposed to treatment
31 Oct 2002
The government ordered an official inquiry yesterday after patients were exposed to treatment at a Middlesborough hospital. It is suspected that 24 patients may have been treated while on the premises, but so far only 22 of them have been informed of this. The Department of Health has now asked a team of specialists to find out why the patients were treated in contravention of government policy.
In a statement last night the DoH said: "We sincerely regret that these patients have been exposed to treatment in a hospital. A full inquiry is now underway and we will find what caused this shocking and terrible incident to occur. We can only hope and pray that it doesn't spread to other hospitals and patients."
Doctors at Middlesborough General Hospital are, however, angry at the DoH response. "We always followed all government guidelines while treating the patients in question," protested a spokesman. "They were left in corridors for hours, the rooms they were in hadn't been cleaned – we even pushed one of them out into the car park for a while! I don't see how the government can criticise us for following their own standards of care."
The Department of Health declined to comment further.
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