Safer Care Victoria is working with Albury Wodonga Health, Albury Wodonga Private Hospital and Insight Private Hospital (located at The Gardens Medical Centre) to directly contact around 2,000 patients who had a colonoscopy performed or supervised by Dr Liu-Ming Schmidt in the Albury Wodonga region since 1 January 2018.
An investigation has found that some colonoscopies performed or supervised by the surgeon between 2018 and 2022 were incomplete, which may have affected the accuracy of the resulting diagnoses.
In the majority of cases the risk to patients is low, however to ensure patient safety, many affected patients will need to undergo a repeat colonoscopy as a precautionary measure.
We understand this is a distressing issue for patients and their families and we are sorry for their experience. It is not the standard of care that they deserve or that we expect – and we are taking steps to rectify this as soon as possible.
We have initiated a recall process to contact anyone who had a colonoscopy performed or supervised by Dr Schmidt after 1 January 2018 to reassess their treatment.
Those affected will be contacted directly and then individually assessed to ensure any further treatment can be scheduled as soon as possible – with the most urgent patients to be seen within 30 days.
In the meantime, anyone with immediate concerns should contact our support line on 1800-950-677.
Every person impacted will be offered support and counselling to ensure the best health outcomes, as well as peace of mind.
Free and immediate support and counselling can be accessed through our Mental Health and Wellbeing hubs on 1300-375-330.
The Albury Wodonga community can be assured that this matter is confined to the surgeon in question. All three health services continue to provide safe and reliable health care to the community and are deeply committed to ensuring affected patients and their families receive the best available follow-up care.
Does this apply to me?
The graphic below provides you with a simple way to determine if you are impacted by the Albury Wodonga Region Colonoscopy Recall.
Should you have immediate concerns, you can contact our support line on 1800-950-677.
We will work to minimise the need for any patients requiring a repeat colonoscopy to travel to have their procedures redone and will do our best to accommodate the individual needs of anyone requiring treatment.
Anyone needing to travel will be supported with accommodation and transport costs.
How will this review work?
Who does this apply to?
We are directly contacting around 2,000 patients who had a colonoscopy performed or supervised by Dr Liu-Ming Schmidt in the Albury Wodonga region since 1 January 2018
What happens next?
A representative from our independent support team will be contacting you shortly by letter and telephone to discuss your individual circumstances and assess your healthcare needs.
This will be followed by a phone consultation with a qualified clinician who can answer any concerns you may have and advise what, if any, further tests or treatment may be required.
What if I need a follow-up colonoscopy?
A specialist team of clinicians will arrange any follow-up care. We are liaising with health services across Victoria and NSW to help complete this work.
Patients who are classified as urgent will have an initial consultation with a clinician and a repeat colonoscopy within 30 days of their consultation. All other patients will have their procedure completed within six to twelve months of their consultation.
We will work to minimise the need for any patients requiring a repeat colonoscopy, to travel to have their procedures redone and will do our best to accommodate the individual needs of anyone requiring treatment.
Anyone required to travel will be supported with accommodation and transport costs.
What do I do if I feel unwell?
While we expect the risk to patients is low, as a general rule it is important you monitor your health for any sudden changes.
If you are experiencing symptoms that you find concerning, we recommend you visit your GP.
How is the review working?
To see how this review will work, click here
I want to talk to someone.
Should you have immediate concerns, you can contact our support line on 1800-950-677. Free and immediate support and counselling is available through our Mental Health and Wellbeing hubs on 1300-375-330