Planet China

Confusion, then chickens

Minor mistakes with medical records can have major consequences. For a luckless woman living in Nanjing, a faulty report nearly brought an end to her marriage.

Surnamed Li, the 30 year-old had been married for six years when a report from a regular check-up was sent to her home in September. On Li’s pregnancy records, the hospital staff had indicated that the mother of one had been through seven abortions and 24 miscarriages. Her husband was horrified, fearing that Li has been hiding her personal history. Despite her repeated assurances that the records were botched, the couple’s relationship floundered.

According to, Li stormed into the hospital last month and confronted medical staff. Having admitted they had filled in the information incorrectly, they made an unusual offer of compensation: two chickens.

Apparently it is not uncommon for patients at Chinese hospital to bring chickens as gifts for the doctors and nurses. A pair of recently-donated birds was readily available and the medical staff thought that they should be enough to make Li happy. But that wasn’t the case. As reports, Li is now planning to sue the hospital for the “psychological suffering” caused by the erroneous report.

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