Anaesthetist had open sores, Albury hospital patient claims

ALBURY Wodonga Health is investigating claims an anaesthetist worked in an operating theatre with uncovered open sores on his arms.

But the organisation is not concerned by the man’s actions.

The Wodonga woman, 60, who made the complaint underwent a leg operation in Albury on June 27.

She claims to have seen open sores on the man’s arms before being placed under anaesthetic, leading to fears she could fall ill.

“They were on his arms from his elbow to his wrist,” the woman, who asked to remain anonymous, said.

“It really frightened me.

“There were no Band-Aids or gauze or anything covering it.

“Of course it was a bit late to walk out of there with a broken leg.”

The woman had only recently finished her chemotherapy treatment after being diagnosed with breast cancer.

“When you’ve had chemo you’re really susceptible to infection,” she said.

The woman complained to the healthcare provider, but said she failed to receive a response until she threatened to go to the media.

Albury Wodonga Health operational director of surgical services Dennis Baker said the matter was being investigated.

“The organisation does not have an issue with the practitioner, but the patient did,” he said.

“It requires a high level of investigation and we’re part way through that.

“The anaesthetist has been working for a long time and (the condition) has not been raised as an issue in the past.

“The organisation is aware of it and does not believe it poses a risk.”

Mr Baker said all parties in complaints were given an opportunity to be involved before the issue is resolved.

“Clearly this hasn’t been resolved as quickly as this lady would have liked,” he said.