Leicester's hospitals fined £6,000 for two mistakes in patient care
Concerns have been raised after two incidents involving a mistake in medication and in an operation were reported at Leicester's hospitals.
In August, one incident was described as "inappropriate administration of a medication".
Last month a "foreign object" was left in a patient after an operation, a mistake immediately rectified.
A spokesman for the University Hospitals of Leicester NHS Trust said no more details could be given due to patient confidentiality but there had been no major harm to patients.
Is follows three other incidents which the Mercury reported on earlier this year.
A leading GP who heads the new Leicester City clinical commissioning group, which takes over responsibility for running local heath services in April, said the number of incidents, known as "never events", was worrying.
A "never event" is a serious, preventable patient safety incident which the Government says should not occur.
The commissioning group, which is responsible for monitoring the contract with the hospitals, is to level a penalty of £6,513 at the trust.
Moira Durbridge, director of safety and risk at the trust, said: "Never events are rare in our hospitals and we take them incredibly seriously, using the learning from them as a spur for improvement.
"Over the past year, we have looked after more than a million patients and carried out around 148,000 operations.
"During that time we have reported five 'never events'.
"While this is a very small number, it is still five too many and we will continue to make improvements to ensure the safety of our patients."
She said all the events were thoroughly investigated and measures put in place to stop it happening again.
In April, one patient was given the wrong lens during cataract surgery and had to have a second operation to put in the correct one.
In a second incident in April surgeons started to operate on the wrong finger of a woman.
As surgery began, a trainee surgeon noticed the consultant starting to make a cut on the wrong finger which had to be dressed to close the wound and surgery carried out on the correct finger. In May, doctors took out the wrong tooth of a female patient.
A spokesman for the clinical commissioning group said it was working with the trust to improve standards of care and "to ensure incidents such as these are a thing of the past."
Last year £3,000 was withheld in payment to the hospitals by the primary care trusts because of "never events".
There was a penalty of £2,553 after a swab was left in a patient and £638 after chemotherapy was given by the "wrong route" – the right drug and dosage were given to the patient but not in the way doctors prescribed.
Zuffar Haq, from the Leicester Mercury Patients' Panel, said: "It is very sad to see these numbers increasing and a worrying trend."