A man name Yuvaraj Krishnan is being investigated by police after he allegedly used fake documents to pose as a doctor at one of New Zealand’s most busiest hospitals.
After nearly 6 months of employment at Middlemore Hospital, Krishnan's qualifications were found to be forged.
By falsifying records, including a medical doctorate, the man was able to gain employment as a clinical researcher with the Counties Manakau DHB.
His employment in the respiratory department involved patient contact.
The DHB’s Chief Medical Officer Dr Andrew Connolly advised that they "have reviewed the care of every patient who was seen" by Krishnan.
This includes investigations, treatment plans and the dispensing of any medications during the time he was at Middlemore Hospital.
"[We're] now contacting all patients seen by this person - a thorough investigation of the clinical care provided by him has told us that there has been no compromise to any patient’s care," said Dr Connolly.
However, this isn’t the first time Krishnan's been deceitful.
According to reports, in 2010 Krishnan applied to Auckland University’s medical school, but was rejected.
Despite this, he went on to attend classes and clinical tutorials for the next two years.
He evaded suspicion by not submitting any assignments or sitting exams, and was able to take part in ten hours of cadaver dissections, and non-sensitive clinical practices on fellow students.
Ultimately he was discovered by a fellow student who asked him to provide an ID number for a group project.
This student was reportedly extremely concerned as the class was set to begin patient-facing rotations in hospital the following year.
Other students were shocked and upset, particularly as many had given him their consent to perform practice procedures on them in class.
The result of this deceit was a trespass notice from the university, and an internal investigation into how this happened and how to prevent a recurrence.
When the university sat down with him and his parents to discuss the case, he could not provide an explanation for his deception.
Police and Counties Manukau DHB are continuing to investigate the matter at Middlemore Hospital.
The hospital and DHB have deeply apologised, and reassured the public that they are doing everything they can to find out how this happened.
The DHB have confirmed that the employment and vetting process is the responsibility of the hiring hospital.
Middlemore is looking into their vetting procedures, but many are concerned about the apparent ease with which the man’s scheme was pulled off.
Not only are standard reference and vetting checks required when applying for a medical doctor position, but the Medical Council of New Zealand is required to keep a list of all registered doctors in the country.
CEO of the council, Joan Simeon, confirmed Krishnan was never on that list.