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District court Mülheim / Ruhr complains of documentation errors by the veterinarian
Mülheim / Ruhr (jur). If a veterinarian has not documented an unsuccessful dog operation and then also slows down the x-rays, he cannot claim a fee. This was decided by the Mülheim an der Ruhr district court in a recently published judgment of July 21, 2016 (file number: 23 C 489/15).
Specifically, it was about the mixed breed bitch “Sally”, who was brought to a veterinary practice by her owner in July 2014 because of seizures all over her body. After taking x-rays, the vets discovered that the dog had swallowed a sewing needle that was located between the esophagus and the stomach.
The veterinarians agreed with the dog owner that they wanted to remove the needle by palpation. But during the operation the needle was not found in the dog, so that Sally's stomach and belly were closed again.
The doctors of the veterinary practice issued the dog owner several invoices totaling 1,218 euros for the unsuccessful operation. However, the dog owner did not pay.
The district court decided not to. Because the veterinarians had insufficiently documented the intervention. There is no detailed operation report showing from which side Sally's stomach was opened. In particular, the x-rays taken are no longer available. So it can no longer be determined whether the dog was X-rayed and operated incorrectly.
"A surgeon is not allowed to work like this during his successful operations, least of all with his failed ones", the district court ruled on the lack of documentation. The veterinarians could therefore not prove that they worked according to the rules of veterinary art. They are therefore not entitled to any remuneration.
The dog is well again. In a veterinary clinic, the needle that has now moved into the lungs was removed. fle