Hospital workers from the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center’s Bedford Memorial hospital are accused of disrespecting numerous confidentiality policies after some hospital employees entered an operating room and took pictures of a patient under anesthesia. The patient had a genital injury that required the removal of a foreign body. More than that, the photos were taken on personal phones.
Numerous staffers entered the operation room
The staff that was not central to the patient’s care entered the operating room. According to one physician, “At one point when I looked up, there were so many people it looked like a cheerleader type pyramid.” Employees tried to come up with various explanations in order to justify their presence in the room.
Hospital employees took photographs of the anesthetized patient
Staffers took out their smartphones and they snapped multiple photos. “Initially, we thought there was only one picture taken but later we learned of others,” the report revealed.
A hospital employee came forward and complained about the incident after he saw photographs of the patient circulating around.
In the report, one individual declared that “I was doing a tendon repair, when someone, I don’t remember who, one of the OR staff, came into the room and said that there was a patient in the ER with a genital injury. I thought, ‘How does this happen?’ I couldn’t imagine how the patient did it.”
The mysterious injury was not described in the report.
An investigation took place
The case was investigated and Pennsylvania’s Department of Health and Human Services recently released a report.
After breaking hospital policies, two staffers were suspended, while the surgical services nursing doctor was fired. The hospital also issued a memo regarding its policies and privacy issues.