Inquiry at Pantelimon Hospital After 17 ICU Patients Reportedly Die Due to Underdosing

Hospital manager: Deaths could not be avoided, treatments not flawed.

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The deaths of 17 patients at Pantelimon Hospital in Bucharest prompted four extensive investigations. Patients in the Intensive Care Unit allegedly received treatment doses ten times lower than required. The care director formally notified the manager in writing. The individual who raised concerns about the deaths at Saint Pantalimon Hospital is a nurse.

The medical care director says in the notification that on April 10 she was informed by a nurse from ICU that between April 4-7, 2024 “about 20 patients died in the intensive care ward, the reason being the intentional decrease of noradrenaline on the injectomat “.

The first data of the checks made by the St. Pantelimon Emergency Hospital show that the deaths in the Intensive Care Unit “could not be avoided” and that the treatments for the patients were not flawed, the manager of the medical unit, Bogdan Socea, announced on Friday.

Bogdan Socea, the manager of Pantelimon Hospital, said that the deceased patients “had complex problems with many associated diseases”.

“Each case will be analyzed, with the related documents. The nurse raised this suspicion, that the doctors would have deliberately lowered the dose of noradrenaline, it is not known for what reason. The commission checked the stocks of noradrenaline, which were always sufficient. It is a vasopressor, which maintains blood pressure in patients when they are in a serious condition,” he explained a day ago.

The Minister of Health, Alexandru Rafila, requested an investigation and sent the Control Corps to the hospital. He says this is a large number of deaths, even for an Intensive Care Unit.

“I have doubts about this situation, especially since we are talking about a medical assistant who says that the doctors did not administer the correct treatment. I can’t comment, I’m not a specialist, I don’t know the situation on the spot, but obviously if it’s a serious medical fault, the College or other competent institutions will be involved. I don’t want us to end up in a situation where a medical assistant’s unclaimed complaint constitutes an indictment for doctors, it’s not right. We cannot jump to conclusions just from an unverified claim. It is not about an assumed accusation and we do not know who is the author of this accusation”, said Rafila.

The control body will check the observation sheets of deceased patients. It is about 17 people, aged between 49 and 92 years. The 49-year-old patient was in the ICU ward since last year.

Today, the first hearings are held in the case of the suspicious deaths at the Saint Pantelimon hospital. Several medical professionals will come to the police to give statements. All the doctors who worked at ICU between April 4-7 are to report to the police Homicide Unit. Investigators are now beginning to gather evidence, from patient records to surveillance footage.

Cătălina Poiană, president of the College of Doctors from Bucharest, told Digi24 that an investigation was also started by the institution she leads. Exhumation of the dead patients is also considered.

Testimony of a dead patient’s relative

On the other hand, relatives of the dead patients start to come out with statements.

The daughter of a patient accuses that the hospital employees offended the relatives and that no one wanted to tell her anything about her father’s condition.
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