Patients received a text message from a UK GP telling them they had lung cancer instead of wishing them a ‘Merry Christmas’.
It is believed that hundreds of people registered at the practice were sent the texts with the erroneous diagnosis.
This included a father waiting for the results of a lung cancer test, The sun reports.
Real estate developer Chris Reed, 57, said his partner broke down in tears.
He said he tried calling the practice but the lines were blocked.
He rushed there and demanded to see a doctor, where he was told it was a mistake and his results were negative.
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Chris, from Norton, England, said: “They went from ‘You have lung cancer’ to ‘Merry Christmas’ in about an hour. Unbelievable.”
Patients at Askern Medical Practice near Doncaster received the text on Christmas Eve.
It asked for “a DS1500 for the above patient”. Diagnosis — Aggressive Lung Cancer with Metastases”.
DS1500 is the form people with terminal illnesses use to claim benefits, and “metastatic” means a cancer has spread and is almost certainly incurable.
The practice sent out an apology text to angry and frightened patients, including the original celebratory message, but even that didn’t seem to be working properly.
Becky Werrett said, “I’ve had three Merry Christmases so far.”
The practice was contacted for comment.
This article originally appeared in The Sun and is reproduced with permission
Originally posted when GP patients received a text telling them they had lung cancer