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Top transplant surgeon wins unfair dismissal case

December 21 2015

A pioneering transplant surgeon was unfairly dismissed from his job at a top London hospital, it has been ruled.

Professor Nadey Hakim, 57, was dismissed from his post at Hammersmith Hospital in February after being accused of gross misconduct.

Bosses accused him of ‘sacrificing’ the needs of a female patient undergoing a kidney and pancreas transplant by performing a kidney swap operation on two brothers just hours before.

The woman’s kidney was transplanted by junior doctors and Prof Hakim completed the operation with the pancreas four-and-a-half hours after her operation began.

The tribunal was told the pancreas had been ‘left on ice’ while the junior doctors waited for Prof Hakim to complete the operation on the brothers at another London hospital.

A tribunal found that he had ‘made an error of judgement’ but ruled in his favour.

At the week-long hearing, Employment Judge Sarah Goodman said: “If all clinicians were dismissed for an error of judgement then hospitals would be depleted of their staff.”

The tribunal heard that the woman and both brothers had made full recoveries.

A spokesman for Prof Hakim said: “At the heart of this case are two patients who were each in need of life-saving transplant surgery.

“There has never been any question that the outcome of each operation performed by Prof Hakim was extremely successful.

“Professor Hakim’s priority was to ensure that each of these patients received the care they needed in an area of surgery dependent on the unpredictable availability of donor organs.”

Prof Hakim now has to wait until another hearing on 11th January to learn whether he will be reinstated at the hospital.