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Nurse Indicted for Injecting Bleach into the Dialysis Lines with a Syringe – 5 Died

Posted Apr 03 2009 11:50pm

This is a horrible story all the way around.  Bleach is used to disinfect, and thus is a part of a dialysis center’s supplies.  There are several comments made at the post.  If 2 employees witnessed this, then I think it’s pretty cut and dry, but when and where I would like to know.  The machines do have to be cleaned and checked for any bleach residue all the time, so that goes with the territory. 

It was also reported that she was a former drug addict, so add that on.  5 deaths and 10 people suffering sounds like some very high numbers and 19 incidents called isolated?   The report also said the record keeping was not good as well, maybe a good place for electronic record keeping in the facilities in the future?  If it saves lives and does an audit trail to catch the even before it goes to the second incident, it is worth it.  BD  image

A Lufkin nurse was indicted yesterday on charges that she injected bleach into 10 of her patients, killing half of them and severely sickening the rest.

Kimberly Saenz's (right) alleged actions alone would make this one of those criminal cases that ends up on Dateline NBC or 60 Minutes. But it is made more baffling by the apparent failure of her supervisors to realize, or disclose, that the series of deaths in 2007 and 2008 were suspicious.

DaVita fired Saenz — who had worked for the company eight months and undergone 10 weeks of dialysis training — a day before police filed charges. Her vocational nursing license was suspended May 14 last year after two complaints were filed with the state nursing board, including allegations she injected patients with bleach. The other complaint stemmed from an August 2005 accusation that Saenz had stolen Demerol — a narcotic pain killer — from Woodland Heights Medical Center, where she worked at the time.

The Texas Department of State Health Services also found that workers at the Lufkin DaVita Dialysis center kept shoddy medical records, The Lufkin Daily News reported. Because of that, it was difficult for authorities to know whether 14 additional deaths in a matter of months were also because of Saenz's poisoning.

DMN INVESTIGATES Blog | The Dallas Morning News

Technorati Tags: Dialysis, bleach, deaths, poisoning, Texas
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