Doctors Killing Patients in NO?
Amanda links to an extraordinary story of a New Orleans doctor deliberately killing her patients:
Doctors working in hurricane-ravaged New Orleans killed critically ill patients rather than leaving them to die in agony as they evacuated hospitals, The Mail on Sunday can reveal.
With gangs of rapists and looters rampaging through wards in the flooded city, senior doctors took the harrowing decision to give massive overdoses of morphine to those they believed could not make it out alive.
In an extraordinary interview with The Mail on Sunday, one New Orleans doctor told how she 'prayed for God to have mercy on her soul' after she ignored every tenet of medical ethics and ended the lives of patients she had earlier fought to save.
Her heart-rending account has been corroborated by a hospital orderly and by local government officials. One emergency official, William 'Forest' McQueen, said: "Those who had no chance of making it were given a lot of morphine and lain down in a dark place to die."
I don't have any first-hand experience with evacuating patients, but this account just doesn't ring true to me.
For one thing, I can't imagine how one MD can get her hands on all those extra doses of morphine. I mean, in L&D, under normal conditions, the charge nurse practically strip searches you if the counts are off by one dose. In a hospital under a state of emergency, with the pharmacy in lockdown, extra morphine is available for the asking or taking? In any case, I find the corroborating sources--an orderly, and William 'Forest' McQueen, a utility manager--a bit iffy.
Not only that, but, even in the aftermath of a hurricane, unless you have totally snapped, you don't administer lethal doses of morphine to patients because [t]hey would have been dead within hours, if not days, anyway. Maybe the doctor was talking about pain meds for cancer patients, and slow codes on DNR patients, and the reporters somehow misunderstood.
Your thoughts on this story?