Doctor never saw patient's lab results

 

The results of a test that would have indicated the severe illness of a patient at St James’s Hospital in Dublin last year were available, but they were not picked up by her doctor, Dublin Coroner’s Court heard yesterday.

Mary Dolan (81), Castlerea, Co Roscommon, died on February 20th, 2009. She had attended the hospital for an operation to remove gall stones and had developed pancreatitis.

Coroner Dr Brian Farrell was told yesterday that statements had been received by counsel for Ms Dolan’s family, Ciarán Craven, from the hospital’s legal representative.

Mr Craven said the lab results for the amylase test, an enzyme that indicates pancreatitis if present in high levels, were phoned in on the morning after Ms Dolan had been tested. They indicated she had more than 30 times the normal level of amylase in her system.

The results were received by 11am and put on the hospital’s computer, but the doctor treating Ms Dolan never saw them, Mr Craven said.

Dr Farrell adjourned to July 19th. He would accept final submissions then.