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More allegations against Patel -

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More allegations against Patel

The World Today - Thursday, 12 February , 2009 12:47:00

Reporter: Annie Guest

BRENDAN TREMBATH: The former Bundaberg Hospital doctor Jayant Patel allegedly told a patient's wife
an operation had been successful with little bleeding, while nurses and an anaesthetist raised
concerns about blood loss.

Patel is charged with manslaughter along with grievous bodily harm and fraud.

The court also heard allegations that Patel dismissed concerns his patient was bleeding after
surgery. But Patel's defence counsel questioned one of the nurses about whether she had something
against Patel.

Our reporter Annie Guest is at the Brisbane Magistrates Court and joins me now.

Well, Annie who has appeared at Jayant Patel's committal hearing today?

ANNIE GUEST: Today at the Brisbane Magistrates Court one patient's wife and four nurses have
appeared via video-link from Bundaberg.

Gerardus Kemps' wife, Judy Kemp, was one of those who appeared. Now her husband died after Patel
performed an oesophagectomy. This is the operation that he'd been restricted from performing in the
United States.

He had previously been sick, his wife Judy Kemp told the court, and was offered a free check-up lat
in 2004. She was concerned he looked a little anaemic so she said have the check-up. Now he ended
up diagnosed with cancer and sent to hospital. Not long afterwards he was dead.

Under questioning from the prosecution, Judy Kemp said that Patel rang her after the operation. She
told the court, 'That's right, he rang me up to say that the operation was finished, it was a real
big success. There was only a little bleeding but it was nothing.'

Now a little later we heard from two theatre nurses and an anaesthetic nurse and they told the
court that Gerardus Kemp bled hundreds of millilitres into a drain during and after the operation.
One nurse said Patel didn't want to accept there was any blood loss during the operation.

Now he was called back by the anaesthetist to see Gerardus Kemp who was still on the theatre table
after the operation and the nurse said that, 'he was cranky and he had no intention of reopening
him and he accused us of holding up his theatre.'

Now later on Gerardus Kemp was sent to ICU, later operated on again and died.

BRENDAN TREMBATH: How did Jayant Patel's lawyer respond to this?

ANNIE GUEST: Well defence counsel Michael Byrne asked one of the nurses, Marie Goatham about notes
she'd made about the incident and later added to and he asked, 'Was it because you had something
against Dr Patel that you made additions?'

And she said, she told the court, 'No, it was because there had been an incident and I was going to
prepare a statement.'

And the defence also pressed the theatre nurse on her recollection of another operation Patel is
facing charges over - questioning her over whether the anaesthetist had given an inappropriate
fluid to a person with kidney disease - that's Ian Vowles, the patient's name is Ian Vowles - and
whether her recollection of Dr Patel having accidently cut a bile duct was correct. And the defence
counsel suggested it was in fact another doctor.

And that argument that the defence counsel has been running throughout, yesterday we heard that
they painted a picture of an overworked and dedicated doctor in Patel.

BRENDAN TREMBATH: So what happens next?

ANNIE GUEST: Next we will hear from more nurses and a doctor via video-link from Bundaberg at this
committal hearing which is expected to run for at least another week.

BRENDAN TREMBATH: Annie Guest at the Brisbane Magistrates Court.