IDENTITY checks are to be stepped up at Wrexham Maelor Hospital after the wrong patient was wheeled off for an X-Ray after an identity blunder.
Two patients on the same ward had the same name and their identity details were not properly checked.
North Wales NHS Trust chiefs have now issued a stern warning to all staff that they have to check patient ID properly.
Although the mistake was spotted, trust officials want to ensure the same thing never happens again – possibly with more serious results.
The incident, which occurred a couple of months ago, came to light in a recent NWNHS trust agenda.
Trust spokesman Andy Scotson said: “There were two people with the same name on the ward and the wrong person was sent down for an X-Ray.
“Nothing serious happened as a result, and the correct person was sent for the X-Ray but it was decided to remind staff about checking patient identity.”
A statement by Dr DI Gozzard, trust medical director and J Galvani, director of nursing, said: “Checking patient identification – staff are again reminded that patients being examined, having tests performed or are undergoing treatment need to be positively identified as the correct patient.
“Patients should always be asked a three-point identification in relation to: name, date of birth and home address.
“The patient should state these themselves – not to be read out to the patient for them to confirm – “yes” or “no” as often patients may mishear details and respond as “yes” – this has led to a number of basic errors.”
It comes as trust bosses repeated warnings to ensure all patient data is kept confidential.
A statement added: “Please be aware that all patient information requires confidentiality.
“This does not matter whether it is held in formal medical records, handover sheets or electronic devices.
“All staff are reminded that they have professional and employee responsibilities to protect confidentiality – and these may have formal consequences if breaches occur.”
Last year the then North East Wales NHS Trust reported the highest number of patients’ files lost or stolen in Wales – more than 50 – but this could be explained by better reporting.