Shark attack photo leak twist: New development after image of Sydney Harbour mauling victim in her St Vincent’s Hospital bed ended up on social media

  • A photo of shark attack victim Lauren O’Neill has surfaced on social media
  • The photo breached St Vincent’s privacy policy and outraged hospital bosses
  • READ MORE: Shark victim’s common deed

A photo of a Sydney Harbor shark attack victim has surfaced on social media after police officers provided images of her injuries to government scientists investigating the bite.

Lauren O’Neill (29) went swimming at Elizabeth Bay in Sydney’s eastern suburbs at around 19:45 on Monday evening when she was mauled by a bull shark.

She narrowly survived after managing to climb a pier ladder and was saved by the frantic efforts of neighbours, with one called Triple Zero and a vet applying bandages.

It was revealed last night that a photo of Ms O’Neill at St Vincent’s Hospital, showing her injured leg and emergency workers, was circulating on social media – with the breach of privacy angering hospital bosses.

Lauren O'Neill narrowly survived a bull shark bite when she went diving in Sydney Harbor on Monday evening.

Lauren O’Neill narrowly survived a bull shark bite when she went diving in Sydney Harbor on Monday evening.

Ms O'Neill is pictured on a stretcher just moments after being attacked by the shark

Ms O’Neill is pictured on a stretcher just moments after being attacked by the shark

Some photos of the shark bite from inside the hospital are believed to have been sent to the NSW Department of Primary Industries (DPI). The Sydney Morning Herald Thursday night report.

A government spokesman told the Herald the images were stored securely and insisted they were not shared with anyone other than a handful of specialists to identify the shark’s breed.

USA Online Post Australia has been told that NSW Health will issue a statement this evening. NSW Police and the DPI have been approached for comment.

St Vincent’s Hospital declined to comment.

A photo of Ms O'Neill's gruesome injury has been leaked on social media

A photo of Ms O’Neill’s gruesome injury has been leaked on social media

A government spokesman told the Herald that the images of Ms O'Neill (pictured) had been stored securely and had not been shared with anyone other than a handful of specialists.

A government spokesman told the Herald that the images of Ms O’Neill (pictured) had been stored securely and had not been shared with anyone other than a handful of specialists.

Ms O'Neill was attacked near a jetty in Elizabeth Bay on Sydney Harbor (pictured map)

Ms O’Neill was attacked near a jetty in Elizabeth Bay on Sydney Harbor (pictured map)

David Faktor, a spokesman for the hospital, said in a statement earlier this week: ‘St Vincent’s has become aware of photographs in the public domain which appear to have been taken in the emergency department and which relate to that of a patient injury.

‘St Vincent’s takes patient privacy obligations extremely seriously and is investigating this issue as a matter of priority.

“We sincerely apologize for any role St Vincent’s played in the photographs being taken.”

Ms O’Neill’s limb was saved by a team of expert surgeons at St Vincent’s Hospital who operated on her several times throughout Monday evening and into Tuesday morning.

She is now expected to make a full recovery.

Residents who provided first aid at Sydney’s Elizabeth Bay said Ms O’Neill had been swimming outside a ‘harbour pool’ and ‘swimming around the boats’.

READ MORE: Leading shark expert issues dire warning every Aussie swimmer should read