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The Tokyo Metropolitan Government on Friday issued punitive measures against the director of a municipal hospital and nine employees in connection with a patient’s death in February caused by a disinfectant drip.

Kiyoshi Okai, director of the Tokyo Metropolitan Hiroo Hospital in Tokyo’s Shibuya Ward, was suspended for one month for failing to take adequate preventive measures and for delays in investigating the cause of death.

The nurse held directly responsible for malpractice was suspended for two months, while the other nurse involved was given a written reprimand.

Other warnings were issued to the head of the nursing division, administrators and the doctor who treated the patient for failing to take safety precautions and for their slow response to clarify the cause of death.

Tokyo Gov. Shintaro Ishihara accepted Okai’s offer to resign when his one-month suspension ends, Ishihara said at a news conference.

“The accident severely damaged people’s trust in an institution that is supposed to protect the lives of the people,” Ishihara said.

“But the punishment does not close this case,” he said. “The municipal hospital needs reform, disclosure and better institutionalized checking systems to make sure that such an unbelievable accident will not occur again,” he said.

A 58-year-old woman who underwent surgery for rheumatoid arthritis in the middle finger joint of her left hand died at the hospital on Feb. 11 soon after receiving an intravenous drip that contained chlorohexidinem — a disinfectant for flesh wounds — instead of the anticoagulant heparin.

Police were notified 11 days after the patient’s death and cremation, making an autopsy impossible.

A nurse was later found to have accidentally injected the disinfectant into the patient’s intravenous drip.

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