Sarasota, FL (WorkersCompensation.com) – A prominent orthopedic surgeon has been suspended from Edgbaston Hospital in Birmingham, United Kingdom after reports surfaced that he had kept the bones of patients for over 25 years according to a report from The Independent.
Known as the ‘Father of Modern Hip Resurfacing’ according to his website for the McMinn Center, Dr. Derek McMinn gained notoriety for his pioneering of an innovative hip resurfacing technique and has been featured at worldwide medical societies including the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons and the European Federation of Orthopaedic Societies. McMinn frequently operated on high profile athletes, entertainers and actors, and government officials. Some of his well-known patients included Defence Minister & MP Lord Robathan, Australian Boxing Champion and former rugby player Anthony Mundine, Scotland football manager Gordon Strachan, former X Factor contestant Wagner Carrilho, and tennis star Andy Murray.
Considered one of the world’s leading hip and knee experts, McMinn perfected his hip surfacing technique, “McMinn Resurfacing” and developed the Birmingham Knee Replacement which allows patients to be more active than the traditional knee replacement by providing spiral movement. Additionally, the implant holds up to more wear and tear. McMinn has performed more than 6,000 total hip replacements and 3,500 hip resurfacings and in the process has created many different types of surgical implants and instruments used in the orthopedic world.
Starting in the 90’s, McMinn allegedly kept the bones from as many as 5,224 surgeries that he had performed which violates the UK Human Tissue Act of 1994. The act was originally developed by the Parliament of India to address issues with the transplantation and donation of organs and tissues. The intent of the act was to deter illegal organ and tissue trade by requiring consent for removal from a deceased or live person. Violations of the act can result in fines and imprisonment.
Earlier this year Circle Health Group purchased BMI Healthcare that ran Edgbaston Hospital. Initially the group came under fire for allegedly not notifying patients of the issue; however, a spokesman issued a statement to the Independent saying the organization was taking the issue seriously and fully cooperating with the investigation.
In addition to the allegations of hoarding bones without proper authorization, the investigation has opened up a can of worms regarding two accompanying anesthetists. According to the Independent report, investigators allegedly discovered one case in which a patient was kept under anesthesia for an hour and 40 minutes when the best practice is only 30 minutes. In another surgery case, a patient was left for an hour and 26 minutes while McMinn operated on another patient.