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Prostate patients' lives lost in translation

The tragic deaths of three prostate cancer patients in Nancy highlights the dangers to patients of overworked stressed hospital staff in the global healthcare market.

Health minister Xavier Bertrand admitted last week that an error in translating English operating instructions probably led to the deaths by radiation overdose. He said action would be taken against the individuals concerned. The problem persisted for well over year from 2004 to summer 2005. In all 23 men with prostate cancer were affected, four died and three of these deaths were linked directly to the error.

The hospital did not blame the technicians or the equipment but 'the interpretation and the transmission of the software'.

Page created on March 12th, 2007

Page updated on December 1st, 2009