Orthopedics surgeon Gheorghe Burnei is suspect in a new file, under charges of manslaughter and bodily injury. The Prosecutor’s Office upon the Bucharest Tribunal has subpoenaed Burnei on Thursday to inform him about the new charges.
Investigators say it is a case of a girl from Brasov, operated by Burnei several years ago, who eventually died on the operating table. In 2013, a family from Brasov asked Burnei to operate their daughter, to correct her spine. The surgery failed and the girl died.
Initially, the prosecutors opened a file for suspect death, but the forensic doctor’s report showed it had been a medical error.
The chief of the orthopedics ward of the Marie Curie Pediatrics Hospital, Gheorghe Burnei, a renowned orthopedics surgeon in Bucharest and Romania, was arrested in November 2016, after he had been charged with bribe taking and with performing some unauthorized surgeries on children.
Prosecutors claimed that Burnei would have implanted uncertified ceramics devices in several children’s bodies, fragments of cow bones and pieces of tank filters, while he would have used bolts from the market in some cases. Burnei used to say parents who came to him to operate their children that he is the only doctor in the world who can do certain surgeries, he gave them the impression he is always busy and that he would do them a favor if accepting their case. The same sources revealed that the orthopedist used to recommend surgery although he knew that those deficiencies could not by corrected.
Investigators discovered human bones and tissues in the doctor’s fridge in his office at Maria Curie Hospital, which have been most probably prelevated from children. Some pieces of tissue were several years older, and were stored in improper conditions, together with food.
Prosecutors have also found out envelopes with money hidden in books in the doctor’s bookcase in the hospital, about RON 13,000, EUR 5,000 and USD 750. Investigators said the money represented bribe offered by the parents whose children were operated by Burnei.
By December 2016, 50 complaints had been against the surgeon.
However, despite all these charges, the Bucharest Tribunal has ruled in September last year to lift the practice license interdiction against the surgeon, practically allowing Burnei to resume his activity as a doctor in the public hospitals.