RIPR News
3:31 pm
Fri November 12, 2010

DOH investigating sponge left inside patient at Women and Infants

Providence, RI – By MEGAN HALL

The Rhode Island Department of Health is investigating another medical error- this time at Women and Infants Hospital.

The Department of Health says it received a report of a sponge left inside a patient at the state's largest birthing Hospital. Information on the error reached health officials on September 30th and the investigation is still ongoing.

When reached for comment, a Women and Infants spokeswoman said it's the hospital's practice not to comment on matters still under investigation.

Sponges are the most common objects accidentally left inside a patient's body. A New England Journal of Medicine study found that they make up nearly 70 percent of items forgotten during surgery.

The Rhode Island Department of Health's records show five incidents of forgotten sponges in local hospitals over the past five years.

Do you have insight or expertise on this topic? Please email us, we'd like to hear from you. news@wrni.org.