“Leadership Failure, Abuse Of Power, Vanity”

A whole series of failures has led, according to a Commission of inquiry to the University hospital of Heidelberg a possible breast cancer blood test too early was presented. One of the Chairman of the external Commission, the President of the Leibniz Association, Matthias Kleiner, spoke on Tuesday of “leadership failure, abuse of power and vanity” in the clinic.

The chief of the women’s hospital, Christof’s son, had presented the Test in February when a large-scale campaign to the Public. The promise: breast cancer could soon be detected through a blood test at an early stage. Was advertised the Test as a “milestone”. Critics accused him then to arouse in the absence of a scientific publication and high error rates false expectations.

“The son knew of the lack of validity of the test results”

“The idea of blood tests in the framework of a press conference and wide-scale press campaign in February 2019 was too early – there was not a sufficient number of samples examined, no completed clinical study, no relevant publication in a scientific journal (with Peer Review), for the Boulevard and the colorful leaves instead of serious science communication, the recognition accuracy was sufficient,” – said in a message to the interim report.

Misunderstood academic freedom at the parent level have led to the fact that nobody had prevented the press conference and press campaign. Several Stakeholders had warned the son before the press conference prior to the early release.

“The son knew of the lack of validity of the test results,” said the former Federal constitutional judge Christine Hohmann-dennhardt, also Chairman of the Commission. “The public presentation of the blood tests was evident early.” In one-third of cancer women had not been detected with the blood test, cancer was detected in one third of healthy women faulty cancer, said Small. “This is a dramatically high percentage.”

The Supervisory Board of the University convened a Commission to uncover any misconduct in the process and make recommendations to avoid this in the future. The Commission has conducted 17 interviews with the Participating and 10,000 pages of documentation sighted. Some calls are still pending, therefore, a final assessment is not yet possible.

Reputation of the University has taken damage

The Chairman of the Supervisory Board of the University hospital, Simone Schwanitz, announced further consultations. What are the consequences to be drawn, she could not say now. Schwanitz emphasized the responsibility for the almost 11,000 employees.

“The University hospital of Heidelberg is one of the most powerful and strongest research hospitals in Germany. The results of the research set new standards worldwide.” The reputation had taken the hastily announced the blood test damage. “We will do everything possible to make sure this remains a one-time process,” said Schwanitz. Yet there is no date for the final report of the Commission.

An internal Senate Commission of the University issued on Tuesday an interim report. Since the beginning of the research on the blood test, there is continuous technical and scientific flaws, ie it is. The legal consequences would be tested. The Mannheim public Prosecutor’s office deals with the processes.