Treatment of 66 women seen by former South London Healthcare Trust gynaecologist under scrutiny

PUBLISHED: 12:06 10 July 2013 | UPDATED: 09:27 12 July 2013

Rod Irvine did most of his work at Queen Mary's Hospital in Sidcup

Rod Irvine did most of his work at Queen Mary's Hospital in Sidcup


The treatment of 66 women treated by a gynaecologist at South London Healthcare Trust is under scrutiny.

It followed a sample review of 255 patients who received planned operative care from Rod Irvine, who was mostly based at Queen Mary’s Hospital in Frognall Avenue, Sidcup.

In November last year it was decided he should be excluded from the trust after concerns were raised over his conducts. Although he is still an employee of SLHT he has not undertaken any clinical work since then.

Concerns had initially been raised in August 2012 through the trust’s reporting process and a formal investigation began.

The investigation found there was some cause for concern in the treatment of 49 women and serious cause for concern in the treatment of 17 from a sample of 255.

Dr Chris Palin, SLHT medical director, said: “Any patient who had complications following an operation is highly likely to have been aware of the fact straight away and to have had further treatment to put matters right at the time.

“It’s therefore unlikely that patients will need further treatment. But it’s important that we review all the relevant patient notes to check whether anything went wrong, to acknowledge any mistakes that may have happened, and - if necessary - to apologise and to put things right.

“Of course, all surgery involves risk and can lead to complications. It’s important to understand that operative complications are not necessarily the result of sub-standard care.

“But wherever we find cause for concern it’s important that we explore the reasons for this. That’s why we have written to the women concerned and explained that we will be reviewing their clinical notes.”

Mr Irvine had worked for SLHT since 2002 and the trust has written to a number of women who have had planned procedures or operations undertaken by him.

SLHT has informed the General Medical Council about restrictions on Mr Irvine’s practice.

An email sent to staff informing them about the investigation was leaked to the Bexley Times this morning, but SLHT say they always planned on letting the staff know before telling the press.

An information line has been set up for women who may have been treated by Mr Irvine and who may have concerns about their treatment. The number is 0800 044 5272.

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