This is the case of Keith Hindson (the patient), and the withholding of a cancer diagnosis and mismanagement of a cancerous tongue lesion by an oral maxillofacial surgeon (OMS), Peter Napier Liston, at Wanganui hospital. Named members of Wanganui hospital staff were also aware that Mr Hindson was a cancer patient but they did not inform Mr Hindson. Wanganui hospital was "repremanded" by the HDC on 2 counts of the patients rights charter but they were not prosecuted. How Wanganui hospital escaped prosecution in this matter is a mystery, not even the HDC can explain why, we have asked but we have not received clarification from the commissioner, Mr Anthony Hill, HDC.
For those who want to check out the official prosecution the case, in full, it can be read on these links:
HDC code for above case : 14DC00828
Full decision PDF 581kb
Case note DDF 261 kb
Liston appealed his fine of $5,000.00 (which. I am told, is used to retrain the individual) but happily the judge did not agree as he had (eventually) admitted guilt at the Tribunal and therefore this (and his obvious guilt) meant that his appeal was dismissed. He could not appeal the HDC costs of $21,000.00 (30% of the total cost of his prosecution) as, once agian, I am told is non negotiable and set by the Tribunal. He did get off lightly as the costs started at 50% and was reduced to 40% then the Tribunal settled on 30% in the end. I have been assured that if he had continued to deny the charges he would have been given a much higher fine.
I do not consider this to be any kind of a victory, as, to such a highly paid surgeon, $5,000.00 is pocket money and no amount of publicity will change Keith's condition and all we require (and have always asked for) is justice, but this he has yet to receive.
Incidentally, Liston also lost his case against the press (3 newspapers) who ran the Tribunal hearing details and judgement, which is a victory for free speech and a blow against censorship of the press. Contrary to what certain individuals seem to think about censorship and free speech I firmly believe that the truth is the only way to keep things honest and open, otherwise we might as well be in a dictatorship.
On 19th November 2018 the Wanganui DHB finally reported this serious adverse event to the HQSC, which had happened (offically) on 27th February 2013, only 5 years and 9 months late. Wanganui DHB, once again, covering up what their then CEO (Julie Patterson) ordered. So much for a report that should be made within 15 working days (part A) and completed within 70 working days (part B) - is it a cover up ?, you bet it is.
You may well say that you have a right to complain, but do you have the right to that complaint being investigated ? No, beleive it or not, you don't.