A Wisconsin hospital says it is cooperating with authorities and has implemented new safety measures after a report outlined instances of abuse of infants. Five infants suffered serious injuries -- including a fractured skull, rib and arm -- in the newborn unit of a Wisconsin hospital, resulting in the suspension of the nurse who cared for them, a federal agency said in a report. UnityPoint Health-Meriter hospital in Madison didn't respond to the suspected abuse until early last month, when staff noticed two babies with bruises, the Wisconsin State Journal reported. An internal investigation revealed two similar cases last year and one from January. "The immediate jeopardy began on April 12, 2017 when the facility failed to protect and thoroughly investigate the first report of an injury of unknown origin" to one of the patients, the report said, according to WISC-TV.
According to the criminal complaint, police began investigating reports of injuries to infants in UnityPoint Health-Meriter Hospital's infant intensive care unit in February. Hospital staff had documented an array of injuries to nine infants, including bruising, broken ribs, broken legs and a fractured skull. Kaphaem, 43, inflicted the injuries between March 2017 and February of this year, according to the complaint.
Over the course of eight months, a lethal bacteria infected 10 already critically ill infants in UC Irvine Medical Center's neonatal intensive care unit – an outbreak that the public is only finding out about now. None of the infants have died, hospital officials said. Yet UCI doctors have not found the source of the infections – which continued even after 220 employees used antiseptic soap and ointment to eliminate bacteria on their skin and in their noses. Orange County health officials have known about the continuing hospital-acquired infections since the middle of December, when lab tests confirmed that five infants had been infected by the same strain of a superbug. That month, two more babies were sickened.
The mother of one of 10 infants hit by a potentially lethal superbug at UC Irvine Medical Center disputed this week the hospital administration's claim that parents were told about the outbreak. Briana Walker of Mission Viejo said the hospital staff did not explain when her son tested positive for the bacteria last month that other infants were already being treated for the same infections. She had begun to believe, she said, that her husband or another family member had unknowingly brought the superbug into the intensive care unit from outside. Now, after piecing the evidence together, Walker knows that the hospital staff had moved a baby who had already been sickened by the outbreak to the room next to her son's. About a week later, she said, her son tested positive.
The Wisconsin State Journal reported that UnityPoint Health-Meriter hospital in Madison didn't respond to the suspected abuse until early last month, when staff noticed two babies with bruises. An internal investigation revealed two similar cases last year and one from January. The identity of the suspended nurse has not been released.