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Doctor fined for killing UK patient keeps licence

The Local · 13 Jul 2011, 15:12

Published: 13 Jul 2011 15:12 GMT+02:00

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An administrative court of the Westfalen-Lippe medical association in the state of North Rhine-Westphalia has fined Dr Daniel Ubani over the death of 70-year-old Englishman David Gray, association spokesman Volker Heiliger told The Local, confirming a report in Britain’s Guardian newspaper.

But Heiliger said the chamber did not have the power to strike off Ubani, even though they would like to, because this was up to the local government in nearby Arnsberg, which actually employs Ubani.

“It’s now up to the authorities in Arnsberg; we have no further power to act,” he said.

A spokesman for the Arnsberg district council could not be reached for comment.

Ubani, who has mostly worked as a cosmetic surgeon in the Rhineland city of Witten, has been free to practice despite being found responsible for the accidental death of Gray. Previously he had been given a nine-month suspended sentence and €5,000 fine by another court.

Gray died while Ubani was working as a locum in Cambridgeshire, Britain, in February 2008. Ubani gave him 100mg of diamorphine, which is 10 times the recommended daily dose. Ubani later admitted he had got diamorphine mixed up with pethidine, which is given in much higher doses.

It was Ubani’s first shift as a relief doctor in Britain and had arrived in the country the day before. He was tired and his English language skills were considered limited.

Despite a coronial finding in Britain that Ubani was "incompetent and not of an acceptable standard," he has never been tried for negligence in Britain because German law allowed him to face justice instead in his home country.

Markus Wenning of the Westfalen-Lippe medical association told Britain’s BBC: “The main problem is he is still allowed to practise. We wanted him struck off."

Story continues below…

He said the association was still worried about the safety of patients in Germany.

“We are frustrated by this case, we are keeping up the pressure for change at federal and state level, at this stage we can't do any more,” he said.

The Local/djw

The Local (news@thelocal.de)

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Your comments about this article

16:04 July 13, 2011 by lunchbreak
No one has the power to deprive this guy of an opportunity to harm another patient?

16:40 July 13, 2011 by vossy
Would you want this man treating you?

If he had killed a German national I wonder if the outcome would have been different, why was he working a a relief doctor in Britain anyway? He flew in to do a weekend shift before flying back to Germany, there must have been a lot of money on offer and the paltry sum of a 7k euro fine is disgusting, he probably earned that in the weekend in Britain.
17:26 July 13, 2011 by MrBowlocks
An incompetent German doctor? Whoever has heard of such a thing?
18:15 July 13, 2011 by reallybigdog
Lets be clear as he certainly is not ethnic German.
19:01 July 13, 2011 by Englishted
i would have liked a photo and a facebook campaign to get him sacked and his dine increased and payed to his victim.

German law is all over the place twice in court ,two fines but still working sometimes this is a stupid land.
19:13 July 13, 2011 by harcourt
extremelylargecanine: #4

Phew, that's all right then !!
19:33 July 13, 2011 by Blefuscu

All medical qualifications should be checkable on the internet.

Where did he qualify?

'German' since 1997. Hmmm!
22:21 July 13, 2011 by jg.
A few additional points about Ubani:

He had applied and been rejected by several health trusts in the UK they believed his English was inadequate.

By the time he arrived in England for his first weekend shift as a locum, he had already worked in Germany for week and knew he was too tired to work.

He ran back to Germany after killing Mr Gray, to escape justice. German authorities refused to extradite him, saying they had dealt with the matter and that he would not receive a fair trial in the UK. In reality, Ubani did not even attend the hearing, which had no evidence from UK authorities.

The only person who has spent any time locked up over this affair is the victim's son, who happens to be a GP in the UK and was arrested in Germany when he tried to protest Ubani's apparent immunity.

Ubani has settled a number of cases out of court in Germany and, when he worked in a German hospital, was described by a German doctor colleague as "someone who should never be left unsupervised".
22:28 July 13, 2011 by bigpainingermany
Comment: reallybigdog:

Oh yes he is not ethnic German. What about an ethnic German at Hospital Frankfurt am Main who told me as my Baby lies in there Hospital looking very sick that there where no Doctors to attend to my baby neither to me after telling him that I was not satisfy with my Baby's condition. I was many time at his office to tell him about the condition of my baby after I observed the absence of Doctors and my Baby looking not well but he refer me to take an appointment with is Secretary whom I had earlier tried to contact but to no avail, he never had time to talk to me or look after my Baby at that moment my Baby needed care but he took time to come and say words to me because one of the nurces Nurce does not want me to explained the situation to another parents who asked to know why my Baby was not looking well Quot ( That I have to pay the consequent, that there was no Doctor to attend to me and that other Babys that there were also babies been born on that day, when asked if that means that my Baby will be neglected to death because there was no Doctors to attend to her, answered, yes so is it. A Head of a unit telling a mother full of pain such words, does that also has to do with ethnic German? he also said that my Baby was fine and just hours my Baby underwent operation and die later from complecations from that very operation. Was he out of touch in his unit or is it because he was not dealing with an ethnic German. Eventhough the whole team of Doctors later on that very day told us that our baby was not Ok to be transported to another hospital as we had wished; he told us the next day that we can take our Baby to another Hospital. Was that out of Neglegence or lack of information and co-ordition or maybe the way of treating those who are not ethnic German? Maybe I will like your help Englishted. There are situations one will not easily believe ontill you find yourself in or get to know from others. The molestation I faced in Frankfurt, is something I have never come across in the whold of Germany. In a hospital where life should be saved my baby lived an opposite of it. I was even watched at when I come to the Hospital to see my Baby, I was not allowed to where the operation was done on my Baby. Times without numbered, the nurces and Doctors will tell me that the dont what was wrong with my Baby or never answered question from me at all. Even with the operation, we were forced to signed with the word (you most sign now or you faced the responsibility should sometime happened with your child) The will say to us we dont know what is wrong and will only know if will operate. I am very emotional now so I will have to stop there.
23:27 July 13, 2011 by Lisa Rusbridge
@ bigpainingermany,

I feel like writing a long message expressing my utter sadness and complete outrage at what happened to your baby, to you and your baby's father and entire family -- instead I'll tell you how sorry I am for your loss of your precious child. No one should ever lose a child or be treated the way you were. Not ever.


09:00 July 14, 2011 by heyheyhey
A very sad and alarming truth is that many doctors kill their patients. many doctors get away with it. Many doctors don't care about patients anymore. They only care about how much money they can make. I know this to be true. I work with doctors. I hear them talk. They killed my mother also. She was German ancestry, but not a German citizen. She was killed in Bad Aibling.
22:53 July 14, 2011 by german-guardian
It does not matter where you are from, if some one is a bad doctor and does not care, then he should not be able to practice his profession
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