Injured patients given chance to quiz surgeon

BRONWYN TORRIE AND BLAIR ENSOR
Last updated 05:00 26/02/2013

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Patients who suffered serious complications after surgery by Blenheim surgeon Michael Parry will get the opportunity to ask him questions.

Family members of two patients who died at Wairau Hospital have also been asked if they have any questions to put to Mr Parry during the police interview.

The Zimbabwean-born doctor is at the centre of a criminal investigation that was launched in December, forcing a coroner's inquiry into two deaths to be put on hold. Rachel Riddell, 31, died in January 2011 of significant blood loss after having her gallbladder removed by Mr Parry.

Jim Nicholls, 81, also died of massive blood loss after surgery last May to remove a hernia and his gallbladder.

Mr Parry was stood down the same month on full pay.

At least two further operations have also come under the police microscope.

Picton mother Angie Webber, 26, said she was "lucky to be alive" after going to Wairau Hospital to have her gallbladder removed in December 2010. A 36-year-old Upper Hutt woman also suffered complications during surgery to remove her gallbladder in February 2011.

Both were sent to Christchurch Hospital for follow-up care.

The pair's spokeswoman, Adrien Pitcon-Mason, told The Dominion Post the women were relieved the police investigation was progressing. Being given the opportunity to ask questions would help with the "healing process".

It is understood police will speak to Mr Parry next week.

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- The Dominion Post

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