Surgical packs, drains and devices left in patients for months

An analysis of 31 incidents at 20 Vic hospitals shows 16% of retained items were not discovered for more than six months

Surgical items can be left in patients for months before being detected, according to a review of 31 Victorian incidents over a five-year period.

Accidentally retained surgical items not picked up for months: report

Researchers from a consortium of universities examined the root-cause analysis investigation reports for the incidents occurring in 20 Victorian public health services between 2010 and 2015.

They found in five (16%) of cases the items - mostly involving surgical packs, drains and vascular devices - were not