Belfast Telegraph

One in five Dr Watt patients misdiagnosed - report

Dr Michael Watt
Dr Michael Watt

One in five patients of Belfast consultant neurologist Dr Micheal Watt were misdiagnosed according to details of a report on the largest patient recall in Northern Ireland history.

The BBC has reported that of the around 3,500 patients of Dr Watt's recalled, more than 600 of them were given an insecure diagnosis. Another 329 were told their diagnosis is now uncertain.

Patients were recalled to assess whether they received the appropriate diagnoses and treatment.

Around 200 patients were told that they had been given a secure diagnosis.

Dr Watt, who had been based at Belfast's Royal Victoria Hospital for more than 20 years, is currently suspended from practicing medicine and it has been reported that he intends to retire on medical grounds.

In June a report into the recall of Dr Watt's patients was postponed by the Department of Health. It was believed it would be published sometime in 2020.

The report obtained by the BBC's Spotlight team says that 545 patients had been put on the wrong prescription by Dr Watt, while 332 were told it's not clear if they were put on the right medication.

It also reveals that the recall has cost £1.5m so far.

Earlier this week patients of Dr Watt delivered a letter calling for more openness and transparency from the Department of Health over the matter.

The letter delivered on Tuesday states that Dr Watt's patients were promised openness and transparency throughout the recall which they claim has yet to be fulfilled.

They also requested a meeting with Permanent Secretary Richard Pengelly for Friday, November 29.

Belfast Telegraph Digital


From Belfast Telegraph