12 February 2019

Kenya: City Hospital Denies Role in Botched Breast Enlargement Surgery

Photo: Nairobi News
June Wanza Mulupi.

A city hospital where a woman died as a result of a botched breast enlargement operation has defended itself against accusations that it had a role in her death.

In an affidavit filed in court Monday, Nairobi Hospital said Ms June Wanza succumbed to complications arising from the surgery performed at Surgeoderm Healthcare clinic.

The hospital was responding to claims by three plastic surgeons -- Prof Stanley Khainga, Dr Martin Ajujo and Dr Evans Cherono -- who had moved to court to protest against the manner in which investigations into Ms Wanza's death are being conducted by the Kenya Medical Practitioners and Dentists Board (KMPDB).

'COMPLICATIONS'

"I can confirm that although the patient passed on at Nairobi Hospital, she was only brought there because of complications which arose from a procedure done by the three doctors at their facility," said Dr Christopher Abeid of Nairobi Hospital.

The three doctors had contested the exclusion of Nairobi Hospital and one doctor, Dr Reuben Okioma, in the disciplinary proceedings.

However, Dr Abeid dismissed their claims, saying if they were genuine they would have raised the concern at the start of the inquiry.

As the blame game continues at the High Court, KMPDB has already found that Dr Ajujo, who conducted the procedure, was still a trainee and should not have performed an operation without the supervision of a practising plastic surgeon.

Dr Ajujo and Prof Khainga are shareholders in Surgeoderm Healthcare Limited.

It has also emerged that another doctor, Dr Evans Charana, did not have a locum (private practice) licence from KMPDB.

LACKED INSURANCE

He also lacked professional indemnity insurance as required by law.

At the time of the operation last year, Dr Ajujo was a plastic surgery and reconstructive registrar at Kenyatta National Hospital.

This means he was being trained in his journey to becoming a plastic surgeon.

He was also a Nairobi County employee seconded to Mama Lucy Kibaki Hospital, but was on study leave.

According to Nairobi Hospital, the disciplinary proceedings filed before the medical board by Mr Joseph Mulupi, Wanza's widower, were appropriate.

"I believe that if indeed the three doctors had genuine concerns they would have raised them at the inception of the inquiry and not at this point, I believe it was premature for them as they had not exhausted the effective dispute resolution mechanism established by the medical board," said Dr Abeid.

Nairobi Hospital, therefore, wants the case at the High Court dismissed.

The case will be mentioned on April 16.

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