Clerical error

Health staff on issuance of recovery certificate: ‘It was an honest mistake’

By: Delta Dyrecka Letigio - CDN Digital | July 16,2020 - 02:13 PM

CEBU CITY, Philippines — The health staff of Barangay Kamputhaw in Cebu City said the issuance of a certification of recovery to a patient who succumbed to the Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) was an honest mistake.

The Cebu City Health posted on their Facebook page the statement of the midwife in charge of the Kamputhaw Health Center who issued the certification.

The midwife said that she was not informed by the barangay health worker (BHW) that a 72-year-old patient had died on May 28, 2020, a day after he was reswabbed, and so she processed his swab tests thinking he was still alive.

Such a mistake would not have been made, she says, if there were enough manpower in the health center but her fellow midwife was quarantined for suspected COVID-19, leaving her additional papers to process.

“Second week of June 2020, I submitted list of the positive patient that has been recovered without knowing that this patient has already expired. At this time the positive constituents in Barangay Kamputhaw was increasing rapidly,” said the midwife in her statement.

The midwife noted that for some time, she was the sole health staff for a barangay with a population of 22,113.

She received a bunch of certificates for recovered patients on July 10, 2020, including that of the 72-year-old patient, stating he has clinically recovered and had been “discharged and improved.”

Read: Health care professionals in Cebu City private hospitals need assistance, says Cimatu

So the midwife called the barangay health workers to ask if these patients were in fact recovered through monitoring, and that was how she found out that the patient has actually died.

“I have segregated the certificates and told my BHW not to give this certificate since above patient mention has been expired. Due to the failure of my BHW, she handed it over to the family,” said the midwife.

“I was disappointed, it is not my intent to create trouble in this situation. As a health care provider, I tried my very best serving people in my utmost capabilities and skills towards the same goal,” she added.

The midwife said the clerical mistake was a product of lack of manpower in the time of the pandemic when even health workers processing the papers are getting sick.

The Cebu City Health already issued a public apology on July 13, 2020 over the incident saying it was a “clerical error.”

“It is with deep regrets that this unfortunate incident happened during these challenging times. We humbly apologize and sympathize with the family,” said City Health Officer Daisy Villa. /bmjo

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TAGS: barangay Kamputhaw, Cebu City, Cebu City Health, Kamputhaw Health Center

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