The clumsy 70-year-old Hungarian doctor who failed an English exam six times after he misread the label on the medicine bottle and left a four-year-old boy fighting for his life unable to treat patients
- Hungarian doctor who failed 6 English tests after child nearly died is suspended
- Dr. Gyorgy Rakoczy, 70, misread the label and gave a child an overdose of carbolic acid in 2009
- The GMC told him to improve his English, but he failed the exams.
- Former Royal Manchester Children’s Hospital pediatrician blamed ‘ageist’ tests
Hungarian Dr. Gyorgy Rakoczy (pictured), 70, was suspended for his poor English years after misreading a medication label, leaving a 4-year-old boy fighting for his life.
A clumsy Hungarian children’s doctor who failed six English tests after misreading a medicine bottle and leaving a young child fighting for his life was banned from treating patients.
Dr. Gyorgy Rakoczy, now 70, failed listening, reading, writing and speaking tests after earlier being reprimanded for mistakenly injecting the four-year-old boy with a potentially lethal amount of carbolic acid during a botched hospital operation .
Dr. Rakoczy was reported to the General Medical Council over concerns about his English language proficiency and ordered to retrain in 2019.
But the consultant paediatrician, who worked at the Royal Manchester Children’s Hospital in Manchester, failed the required tests, instead blaming the exams for being ‘age-friendly’ towards him.
At the Practicing Physicians Court Service in Manchester, Rakoczy was suspended from practicing medicine in the UK for a year after a review hearing last month.
He says he no longer wants to work in British healthcare and has applied for the voluntary deletion of GMC’s medical record.
Rakoczy had originally been disciplined after a botched hospital operation in May 2009 in which the unidentified boy was injected with 80 percent phenol, also known as carbolic acid.
At the time, Rakoczy, who was said to have a “limited command” of the English language, was supposed to use a five percent concentration of the substance, but he misread the label.
The boy had been admitted for an examination under general anesthesia after his parents suspected he had a haemorrhoid, which was treated by Dr. Rakoczy.
The consultant paediatrician, who worked at the Royal Manchester Children’s Hospital in Manchester, failed the required tests, instead blaming the exams for being ‘age-wise’ towards him.
But he was left with ‘catastrophic’ internal injuries and needed a colostomy bag after Dr. Rakoczy injected the boy with 16 times the correct dose of carbolic acid and four times a potentially lethal dose.
The highly corrosive liquid burned parts of the boy’s body leaving him with a hole to the bone at the base of his spine.
Since then, he has required more than 30 corrective operations, including the removal of a section of the intestine, and his parents, both health professionals, said their son found it difficult to go to the park and attend birthday parties.
Rakoczy was allowed to continue working at the hospital after the operation, but was suspended for three months in 2012 for gross misconduct.
Dr. Racoczy’s History of English Problems
- In 2009, Hungarian doctor Gyorgy Racoczy, now 70, misread the label on a bottle of carbolic during surgery on a 4-year-old boy and injected him with a massive overdose, leaving the boy fighting for his life and disabled. .
- In 2012 he was suspended from practice for three months for the incident in Manchester.
- In 2019, the GMC told him to pass the English language tests to continue working as a doctor.
- In 2020 he admitted to failing the tests six times but called them ‘ageists’
- It has now been suspended for a year, but Dr. Racoczy has said it will be removed from the registry.
He underwent a performance assessment in 2016 and took a test under the International English Language Testing System (IELTS) the following year, but scored 6.0, down from a 7.5 to pass.
The 2019 court was told that a team of advisers said there were “problems with his command of English” and “he had difficulty using it” with one saying he “sometimes had trouble understanding Rakcozy.”
But colleagues at the hospital said that although the surgeon’s English was “not perfect”, it had “improved considerably” and he was able to discuss issues and participate in team meetings. One patient also came forward when she said the doctor would “go beyond the call of duty” and added that she would be happy for him to “perform surgery on his son tomorrow.”
In 2020, Rakoczy took an Occupational English Test (OET), but only scored an average of 327.5 against the 350 requirement and was ordered to work under supervision for another year. At a third review hearing last year, it emerged that he had not attempted another test since and was suspended for 12 months.
At the latest hearing, Rakoczy argued that the tests were “discriminatory” against people over 60 and said he had appealed to the High Court on behalf of “other doctors in the UK”.
But Ms Anam Khan’s lawyer for the GMC said: “The doctor has again done nothing to commit to expectations of him trying to remedy his disability by improving his English language.”
‘The results of such a test are a key factor in deciding whether a doctor is incapacitated because he lacks the necessary knowledge of English. Dr. Rakoczy has failed to live up to his onus to show why he should be allowed to return to unrestricted practice.
She added: ‘Dr Rakoczy was previously under conditional registration, imposed in both 2019 and 2020, and had failed to meet the conditions and undergo a proper English test. He has not responded to remediation and has limited vision. It is not safe for Dr. Rakoczy to return to unrestricted practice.’
MPTS Chairman Damian Cooper said: “By focusing on the age discrimination issue rather than taking the IELTS or OET exam, it demonstrated a lack of insight on Dr Rakoczy’s part.”