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Hawke's Bay DHB scrambling to check up on 300 patients caught in data blunder

More than 300 renal patients in Hawke's Bay have had to be recalled for appointments and one patient may have been affected due to a "data issue" at the Hawke's Bay DHB.

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People with potential kidney problems didn’t get follow-up appointments with medical specialists. Source: 1 NEWS

The issue dates back to March last year and the District Health Board says the error is affecting the visibility of patients due for recall appointments after their "first specialist assessment in clinic".

Dr Russell Wills, acting chief medical officer at the DHB, told 1 NEWS in a statement the incident has been logged as an "adverse event" and says they believe one patient's health may have deteriorated as a result of the delay.

"A patient event log has also been opened to manage any [other] patients whose health may have deteriorated as a result of a recall clinic delay," he says.

At this stage, the DHB says 127 of  the 300 have already been seen in clinic, with 50 more due in by the end of this week.

Depending on their conditions, some will have blood taken, others just a general check-up.

The remaining 123 patients are currently being phoned for appointments in clinic.

"It is our priority to contact these patients directly and/or link through their GP as they are a specific group of patients," Dr Wills says.

GPs have also been asked to contact the DHB if they have clinical concern for their patients with renal issues or believe they have been waiting longer than expected to be seen for follow-up appointments.

The DHB has launched an investigation to find the cause of the error and has unreservedly apologised.

It isn't clear what caused the error to be realised.

1 NEWS understands the Minister of Health David Clark has been notified about the error under the "no surprises policy".

"I have been made aware of the issue at Hawke's Bay DHB and I’m seeking more information before making any comment," he told 1 NEWS this evening.

Do you know more? Email Sean.Hogan@tvnz.co.nz