Botched cancer test results caused healthy patients to get unnec - KFVS12 News & Weather Cape Girardeau, Carbondale, Poplar Bluff

Botched cancer test results caused healthy patients to get unnecessary treatment

Of the three who were wrongly diagnosed with cancer, two underwent lumpectomies and radiation treatments, according to the Winston-Salem Journal. (Source: Pixabay) Of the three who were wrongly diagnosed with cancer, two underwent lumpectomies and radiation treatments, according to the Winston-Salem Journal. (Source: Pixabay)

(RNN) - Faulty test results at Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center in North Carolina caused medical professionals to treat at least three people for cancer who didn't have the disease.

Of the three who were wrongly diagnosed with cancer, two underwent lumpectomies and radiation treatments, according to the Winston-Salem Journal. Hospital and state medical officials later determined they didn't have the disease.

Another three faced delays in treatment when lab results came back negative for cancer despite having it. One wound up having breast cancer.

At least 19 other patients at the hospital received incorrect pathology test results, though medical officials determined their treatment wasn't affected by the bad lab work because followup testing caught the flaws in those tests.

Hospital president Dr. Kevin High said, "most, if not all, of the misdiagnoses centered on a single individual who is no longer with Wake Forest Baptist.”

Officials with the Center of Medicaid and Medicare Services, a division of the Department of Health and Human Services. have given the hospital until June 12 to correct deficiencies in the lab or face suspension of Medicare billing privileges.

In March, the hospital was in danger of losing its Medicare privileges immediately if it didn't come to an agreement to correct its issues, Becker's Hospital CFO Report said.

The Center of Medicaid and Medicare Services extended the deadline to April 3.

"We promptly notified all patients affected, as well as the physicians who cared for them. We have completed a review of hundreds of similar cases to satisfy ourselves that there are no other patients who have been affected," High said. "In our initial review, we determined that most, if not all, of the misdiagnoses centered on a single individual who is no longer with Wake Forest Baptist. We also determined that additional quality processes, laboratory equipment optimization as well as staff training and education were needed. All of these corrective actions are well underway and most have been completed."

Patient complaints about the hospital caused the federal review of the lab.

Medicare and Medicaid patients represented about 44 percent of the hospital's "gross receivables," the Winston-Salem Journal said.

The newspaper shared a detailed report on the misdiagnoses from the Center of Medicaid and Medicare Services.

Copyright 2018 Raycom News Network. All rights reserved.

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