Radiologist at St. Joseph’s Hospital in Comox identified

Dr. Jose Zanbilowicz has been identified as the radiologist whose work has become part of a probe of medical scans in B.C. hospitals.

  • Feb. 16, 2011 9:00 a.m.
MICHAEL PONTUS

MICHAEL PONTUS

Dr. Jose Zanbilowicz has been identified as the radiologist whose work has become part of a probe of medical scans in B.C. hospitals.

According to a CTV report, cancer patient Yvonne Kafka of Cumberland demanded a full investigation into St. Joseph’s General Hospital in Comox more than two years before the B.C. government included St. Joe’s in a current probe headed by Dr. Doug Cochrane.

Kafka says learned she had breast cancer after she was told scans taken at St. Joseph’s were negative, according to the report.

Her case was reviewed by the College of Physicians and Surgeons, which concluded she had been misdiagnosed, Kafka says, adding that Zanbilowicz did not deserve to be disciplined.

She says a provincial review board referred Kafka’s case to another doctor for treatment.

Zanbilowicz was added this week to Cochrane’s investigation of doctors who might have been misreading scans taken of thousands of patients across the province.

St. Joseph’s CEO Michael Pontus said this week that the radiologist in question at the Comox hospital, who has worked there for more than 30 years, withdrew his hospital privileges amid concerns about the quality of his CT scans.

Pontus said the radiologist was “flagged” after seven scans needed to be reread in early January. The doctor’s clearance to read CT scans was revoked Jan. 18 by St. Joseph’s, said Pontus, although he did not inform the Vancouver Island Health Authority until last Friday.

Management sought advice from the hospital’s risk-management department and sought legal advice and was in the process of doing so without knowing that radiology concerns were arising elsewhere in the province when Cochrane’s provincial review was announced Friday, explained Pontus.

Patients who have concerns are encouraged to contact their family doctor or HealthlinkBC at 8-1-1.

Do you have a story to tell? Contact Record health reporter Lindsay Chung at writer@comoxvalleyrecord.com or 250-338-7816, ext. 243. See Friday’s Comox Valley Record for more.