220 violations by private hospitals detected

MUSCAT, Dec 24 – A total of 220 violations were found to have been committed by private hospitals and clinics in the Sultanate up to December this year. An average of 20 violations, including breach of trust, per month have been found among the private hospitals and clinics, according to the General Directorate of Private Health Establishments, Ministry of Health (MoH).
Violations include medical malpractice, professional negligence by act or omission by healthcare providers, wrong diagnosis, in which the quality of treatment provided fell below the accepted standards of practice, and injury or death of patient.
Two deaths due to medical negligence were reported and proper action was taken in this regard.
The committee monitoring violations booked the hospitals and clinics in and around Muscat, fined them heavily and cancelled their licences or licence of the medical practitioner.
“We carry out regular inspections at healthcare institutions in private sector. We found 220 violations in private establishments,” said Dr Mazin bin Jawad al Khabouri, Director-General of Private Health Establishments.
“As there is a tendency among the private establishments to settle the issue with complainants outside the legal framework, many are not approaching the department,” he said.
A study conducted by the Oman Medical Association has revealed some 100-120 medical errors have been committed on average in Oman each year, some of which are harmful, life-threatening or even fatal to patients.
However, 40-50 per cent of these are related to mismanagement while the rest include complications or misunderstandings between the doctor and the patient.
In cases where mismanagement/ negligence is suspected, the affected should come forward and lodge a complaint with the concerned Violations Department.
“The public have been asked to lodge a written complaint, either in person or by e-mail, to the departments concerned explaining the quality of service received in order to take corrective measures,” said Dr Al Khabouri.