Saturday, April 19, 2008

Cebu Operating Room Scandal


Disclaimer: This video is not the property of this blog's owner and the video is hosted externally.

Before anyone reacts I wanted to share this video for the sake of discussion and as a reference. If you are not open minded and is not willing to accept the thoughts and opinions of other people then please do not continue to read this post if you will only flame me in the end. If you want to know my opinion on this matter please read on.

To those who have no idea what this video is about this is a video taken from a camera of a student nurse at an operating room at Vicente Sotto Memorial Medical Center (VSMMC) at Cebu City, Philippines.

This video (that was spread on the internet like wild fire on Youtube, emails, and even cellphones) was of a 30 year old homosexual who had an Avon's Black Suede For Men Body Spray (thus the name Black Suede Scandal) allegedly inserted into his rectum when he had sex with a stranger.

What made the video so scandalous and caused such a sensation is when the doctors, nurses, and other operating room staff laughed and jeered at the patient's condition as seen in the video.

But here are are some of my reaction upon some comments of people online regarding the said topic:
  • On Medical Malpractice - As defined by Larry Curtis Law Firm is a form of negligence where an injury results from a medical professional’s or medical facility’s failure to exercise adequate care, skill or diligence in performing a duty. We should actually congratulate the doctors for a successful operation. No invasive procedures were done on such an extraordinary case. The operation was a success and there are no complications.
  • On Breach of Sterility - The people seen in the video were curious staff from other operating rooms within the operating room complex therefore they are considered sterile. They did not come from outside the operating room. And the people with no gloves were at least 12 inches away from the operating table so as stated by the sterile technique the operation is still considered sterile. Besides the people with out gloves did not perform the operation.
  • On Cameras in the Operating Room - Actually in my case, cameras are allowed inside the operating room and we student nurses are indeed allowed to take pictures for the sake of documentation which would be used for future case studies.
  • On Breach of Patient Confidentiality - When I reviewed the video footage the patient's identity was not at all exposed. The patient's face was not seen and no distinguishing body marks such as tattoos and birth marks were not captured on film. We wouldn't even know the sex and age of the patient if he hadn't exposed himself to media saying that he was a Florist, he was 30 year old, and he even divulged how that can arrived at his rectum. And yes his consent was asked and he did agree to have the operation filmed because as I reiterate this is a very unusual operation. So the video taking had the patient's consent.
  • On the Revocation of the Doctor's Licenses - I think that the people are overly reacting just like the way Filipinos over-reacted to Teri Hatcher's "some doctor from the Philippines" comment. It's not like the doctors killed someone or anything, I agree that sanctions may be imposed on their behavior but revoking their titles for laughing and cheering is way too harsh.
  • On the Operating Room Staff's Cheering & Laughing - To be fair to the patient, I would also be furious if I were in his position if I knew that a video of me was circulating on the internet but then I would realize that no one would know that it was me. It's also normal for people to be curious and have fun and joke around. In fairness the doctors and nurses were laughing at the situation not at the patient, that is a totally different context. It would be a normal reaction of a normal person to an extraordinary situation. No person was hurt, just a pride that was bruised. But now that we mention it isn't it the patient's fault that he was in this predicament because he had a one night stand with a complete stranger. He was lucky that he wasn't killed by his promiscuity. But that is a totally different issue and that is not my problem. The issue that I am concerned of is the outcome of the health care professionals who are being crucified for an issue that is overly exaggerated.
This issue had circulated and has been talked well enough and I think that this should already be wrapped up and more important issues were tackled like the improvement of the health care system in the Philippines and the improvement of nurse's wages and patient to nurse ratios.

I know that this post would gather a lot of negative reactions but let me again reiterate the blog's disclosure policy: The views and opinions expressed on this blog are purely my own, as this is a personal blog.

***
Sources:
Sun Star - Doctors may lose licenses over surgery scandal
Inquirer - Video scandal grips Cebu hospital
Inquirer - Black Suede scandal

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