The Northern Trust is undertaking a lookback review of work carried out by a locum Consultant Radiologist who was engaged by the Trust between July 2019 and February 2020.

The review, which will involve a total of 13,030 images, is expected to be completed by the end of October 2021.

A total of 9,091 patients (or parents/guardians) who may be affected will receive a letter informing them of the review and providing them with a helpline telephone number to call if they have any concerns. We know that this will be an anxious time for people. However, we would like to stress that the images to be reviewed are only those which were reported on by this particular locum Consultant Radiologist over the time period July 2019 to February 2020. The images for review would only have been taken in Antrim Area Hospital, Causeway Hospital, Whiteabbey Hospital, Mid Ulster Hospital or Ballymena Health and Care Centre.

All of the images relating to the 9,091 patients will be reviewed, but based on an initial audit, we estimate that less than seven percent may have experienced a delay in diagnosis as a result of unsatisfactory image reporting. That does not mean that they will all have come to harm as a result but we will be making a further clinical assessment in each of those cases.

Patients who receive the letter do not need to take any action. We plan to run the review and recall stages of this process in tandem. This means that every patient will be contacted again as soon as we know the outcome in relation to their images and for those who may require further imaging or a follow-up appointment, we will make the necessary arrangements very quickly.

As part of the process we will also be reviewing the images of people who had images taken during the period in question and who are now deceased. If we identify any significant errors which could have impacted upon clinical outcome, we will also be making contact with the next of kin of those persons.

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Related links

Media Release: Northern Trust announces Radiology Lookback Review

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