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12° Nicosia,
05 December, 2022
 
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ER doctor gets suspended sentence in boy’s death

Lawyer for doctor accused of failing to read X-Ray says client will fight to overturn conviction

Newsroom

An ER doctor in Larnaca received a suspended sentence on Friday for the death of a young student, whose fatal head injury during gym class had gone unnoticed after an X-Ray at the hospital.

Dual British-Cypriot resident Iraklis Pantelidakis was handed down on Friday an 18-month prison sentence suspended for three years, following his conviction last month on medical negligence charges.

After a long and protracted trial, a Larnaca criminal court found the GESY doctor guilty in the death of 10-year-old Stavros Georgallis, who died in May 2018 after injuring his head while playing basketball during gym class.

'The defendant went through very difficult times, unprecedented by his own standards, and he is shocked by the loss of the little child, as little Stavros died in his arms'

Pantelidakis, a 41-year-old temporary Emergency Room medical doctor, was found responsible for not taking the time to carefully study an X-Ray before letting the boy go home in the care of his mother, a registered nurse, who later said she was begging the hospital to run more tests.

Pantelidakis’ defense attorney Yiannis Polychronis said his client never accepted guilt and would fight to overturn the conviction.

“The defendant went through very difficult times, unprecedented by his own standards, and he is shocked by the loss of the little child, as little Stavros died in his arms and he has since lived dramatic moments since his death,” the attorney said.

In a previous hearing during mitigation arguments, Polychronis said his client has been unable to work and support his family since his arrest.

Another doctor, ER medical director Kyriacos Kyriakides, had been acquitted of criminal charges in the same trial, after telling investigators he made no medical decision in the boy’s case but was simply asked by his colleague to view the X-Ray.

A gym teacher was also initially implicated in the case but prosecutors dropped the investigation amid protests by union educators who cried foul and accused the government of leaking damaging information about their colleague. 

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