Pittsburgh medical center demotes surgeon after transplant

Reuters News
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Posted: May 26, 2011 8:28 PM

PITTSBURGH (Reuters) - A Pennsylvania medical center demoted a surgeon and suspended a nurse who were involved in the transplant of a kidney from a donor who had hepatitis C, a spokeswoman said on Thursday.

The University of Pittsburgh Medical Center has also suspended its live-donor liver program as a precaution, though no problems were found with that program, UPMC spokeswoman Jennifer Yates said in a statement.

The medical center voluntarily suspended its live-donor kidney transplant program earlier this month after discovering the infected kidney and notified the United Network for Organ Sharing, a national transplant agency. The agency plans to conduct a review.

UPMC said the program suspension will allow the medical center "to thoroughly evaluate our protocols and donor screening processes," adding that it expects "a resumption of cases in the very near term."

"We have taken appropriate disciplinary action against the individuals involved in the kidney transplant," Yates said. "This disciplinary action included the suspension of a nurse and the demotion of a surgeon."

She declined to provide further details about the disciplinary action or the people involved.

(Reporting by Daniel Lovering. Editing by Peter Bohan)