Sun | Nov 19, 2017

Mother to sue hospital for false positive HIV test

Published:Thursday | February 11, 2010 | 5:54 PM

A St Ann mother is planning to sue the St Ann’s Bay hospital, after she claimed that the institution erred when it issued her with an HIV positive result for her son, who was 10 years old at the time.

Sandra Howell, of Shaw Park Heights in Ocho Rios, told The Gleaner/Power 106 News that she has already contacted lawyers regarding the case as she intends to seek redress through the courts.

When contacted, Suzette Morris, the regional director for the North East Regional Health Authority said she was aware of the complaints by the mother.

However, Ms Morris declined to comment further, saying the matter is now a legal issue.

Ms Howell’s action stems from a series of incidents that started back in February 2008 when her son broke one of his legs and was admitted to the hospital, where he remained until he was discharged in April of that year.

Ms. Howell said she was told by the hospital that her son was HIV positive and the news left her devastated.

But, spurred by the belief that the results could never be accurate, she went and had an HIV test done on herself in Ocho Rios in April 2008.

Her result was negative.

She said the result made her even more convinced that there was some mistake with her son’s results.

The mother said she took her son from the St Ann’s Bay Hospital, without an official discharge, in order to get a second HIV test done.

This time the result was negative.

Relieved somewhat, Howell returned to the St Ann’s Bay hospital and spoke with doctors there after which another test was done in May 2008.

Although relieved that her son is not HIV positive, the mother says she is upset by the manner in which the situation was handled and says she plans to seek redress.

She says she has already received instructions from a lawyer on how to proceed.