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February 28, 2011

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TB misdiagnosis payout for woman refused visa

A WOMAN refused entry into New Zealand after being wrongly diagnosed with tuberculosis by a downtown hospital has been awarded 18,000 yuan (US$2,736) in compensation.

A hospital in Jing'an District was ordered to pay the sum under court mediation to the woman, surnamed Wang, who had her visa application turned down by New Zealand immigration following its report.

Only after Wang was confirmed healthy by another official hospital did she receive her visa in October 2009, a year after her initial application.

Wang and her husband returned from a nine-month visit to New Zealand to see their daughter last August and took the hospital to court.

Wang told the Jing'an District People's Court that she and her husband applied for nine-month visas at the Shanghai office of New Zealand immigration in October 2008.

New Zealand immigration regulations require expatriates planning to stay there for more than six months to undergo an X-ray check to ensure they are free of tuberculosis.

The couple received the examination at the hospital appointed by the immigration office, the name of which wasn't identified by the court. Wang was told she had tuberculosis.

Although she was examined by four other hospitals which pronounced her healthy, the hospital insisted on its own diagnosis and reported the result to the immigration office, the court heard.

As a result, Wang was refused a visa to enter New Zealand.

It was not until June 2009, when another hospital appointed by New Zealand immigration gave Wang a clean bill of health, that she finally received a visa.

"It not only cost me a lot of money undergoing repeated medical examinations but also tired me physically," Wang said at the court hearing.


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