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Jul 4, 2013

K.H.M.H. Board meets on neonates deaths…C.E.O. not invited to meeting

Francis Gary Longsworth

The Board of Governors of the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital held a meeting today in the Capital. The meeting ended at about three p.m.  Of note is that the hospital’s C.E.O., Doctor Francis Gary Longsworth, was not invited to the gathering. During the first press conference on the outbreak, Longsworth said that he first heard of the deaths from the press and unceremoniously said “one of the parents went to the media I believe, and that actually prompted the investigation because up to that point, we were not aware that situation was developing” And though the C.E.O. was not at the meeting, the Pan American Health Organization’s report on the inefficiencies of the hospital and the deaths of thirteen newborns, seven of which were attributed to a bacterial outbreak, was the focus of the discussion. It is unclear whether anyone will be held personally responsible for the poor performance of the hospital but it was clear that the bacteria was transmitted via injections. We note that the PAHO report referred to the Infection Control Unit’s lack of yearly goals; no evaluation to verify knowledge gained on training, and lack of data with the exception of when outbreaks occur – all clues that there was a lack of communication between quality control and the C.E.O.  The samples of the bacteria recovered from infants in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit were also destroyed by the Central Lab because the K.H.M.H. did not request samples to be saved. There were also other quality control issues including the wrong substances being used as hand sanitizers. We have been unable to reach the Chair, Chandra Cansino, for comment, but we will continue following the story as it breaks.

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