Los Angeles Hospital Penalized Over Drug Overdose in Twins

by VR Sreeraman on  March 21, 2008 at 11:32 AM Medico Legal News   - G J E 4
Los Angeles' Cedars-Sinai hospital has been fined 25,000 dollars for a blunder that saw actor Dennis Quaid's newborn twins given a massive overdose of a blood thinner, a statement said Thursday.
Los Angeles Hospital Penalized Over Drug Overdose in Twins
Los Angeles Hospital Penalized Over Drug Overdose in Twins

California's Department of Public Health cited "systemic, unsafe medication practices," at the facility, which is the hospital of choice for Hollywood stars and one of the most prestigious in the United States.

Quaid's children -- Thomas Boone and Zoe Grace -- were left fighting for their lives last November when they were given 1,000 times the normal dosage of anti-clotting drug heparin.

Heparin is used to flush out intravenous tubes and prevent blood clots. Babies typically receive 10 units of the drug, but Quaid's children were given 10,000 units before the alarm was raised.

The children survived after being given a drug treatment to reverse the effects of the overdose. Another child at Cedars-Sinai was also given an incorrect dosage of the drug.

Cedars was one of 11 hospitals in California to be penalized for violations likely to cause serious injury or death to patients, California's deputy health care director Kathleen Billingsley said in a statement.

Quaid is suing the makers of the blood-thinner, saying the labeling of the drug was to blame for the mishap.

Source: AFP

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