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Tale of last 90 minutes of woman's life [Los Angeles' King Hospital ignores patient to death]
Los Angeles Times ^ | 20 May 2007 | Charles Ornstein

Posted on 05/20/2007 10:52:28 AM PDT by John Jorsett

In the emergency room at Martin Luther King Jr.-Harbor Hospital, Edith Isabel Rodriguez was seen as a complainer.

"Thanks a lot, officers," an emergency room nurse told Los Angeles County police who brought in Rodriguez early May 9 after finding her in front of the Willowbrook hospital yelling for help. "This is her third time here."

The 43-year-old mother of three had been released from the emergency room hours earlier, her third visit in three days for abdominal pain. She'd been given prescription medication and a doctor's appointment.

Turning to Rodriguez, the nurse said, "You have already been seen, and there is nothing we can do," according to a report by the county office of public safety, which provides security at the hospital.

Parked in the emergency room lobby in a wheelchair after police left, she fell to the floor. She lay on the linoleum, writhing in pain, for 45 minutes, as staffers worked at their desks and numerous patients looked on.

Aside from one patient who briefly checked on her condition, no one helped her. A janitor cleaned the floor around her as if she were a piece of furniture. A closed-circuit camera captured everyone's apparent indifference.

Arriving to find Rodriguez on the floor, her boyfriend unsuccessfully tried to enlist help from the medical staff and county police — even a 911 dispatcher, who balked at sending rescuers to a hospital.

Alerted to the "disturbance" in the lobby, police stepped in — by running Rodriguez's record. They found an outstanding warrant and prepared to take her to jail. She died before she could be put into a squad car.

(Excerpt) Read more at latimes.com ...


TOPICS: News/Current Events; US: California
KEYWORDS: cruelty; furniture; lamlk; neglect; suit; viniusinvictus
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1 posted on 05/20/2007 10:52:30 AM PDT by John Jorsett
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To: John Jorsett
Later in the article is this compassionate statement by David Janssen, LA county's chief administrative officer:

Janssen said he was concerned that the incident would divert attention from preparing the hospital for a crucial review in six weeks that is to determine whether it can regain federal funding.

If the hospital fails, it could be forced to close.

"It certainly isn't going to help," Janssen said.

Gives you a lump in your throat, doesn't it?

2 posted on 05/20/2007 10:55:59 AM PDT by John Jorsett (scam never sleeps)
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To: John Jorsett

I don’t believe most of this report. I believe this is another attempt to build sympathy for illegals.


3 posted on 05/20/2007 10:56:45 AM PDT by calex59
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To: John Jorsett

When did they start the Hillarycare program at that hospital?


4 posted on 05/20/2007 10:57:56 AM PDT by Howard Jarvis Admirer (Howard Jarvis, the foe of the tax collector and friend of the California homeowner)
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To: calex59

it said she was a California native.


5 posted on 05/20/2007 10:59:40 AM PDT by Aria (NO RAPIST ENABELER FOR PRESIDENT!!!)
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To: John Jorsett

I have sympathy, but is there more to this story? Is there any previous history with this woman? If you cry wolf too often you can’t complain when people finally ignore you.

JUST ASKIN’ (I have leanred long ago to not accept one side of the story)


6 posted on 05/20/2007 11:00:08 AM PDT by Mr. K (Some days even my lucky rocketship underpants don't help)
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To: John Jorsett

You must think of the job loss in the “Community!” To hell with patients the issue being jobs for the social incompetents. Where are your priorities?


7 posted on 05/20/2007 11:01:42 AM PDT by AEMILIUS PAULUS (It is a shame that when these people give a riot)
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To: John Jorsett

Very disturbing. I wonder about the “boyfriend” taking a powder as this woman was being arrested. But of course, whatever her crime, death was not the penalty. And fine, blame the triage nurse, but she was not the only poerson present.


8 posted on 05/20/2007 11:02:08 AM PDT by jocon307 (The Silent Majority - silent no longer)
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To: Mr. K

I agree. If it doesn’t make sense....smells like a fish story to me.


9 posted on 05/20/2007 11:02:10 AM PDT by svcw (There is no plan B.)
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To: John Jorsett

I find this story hard to believe. Obviously a single payer government run VA like system will solve all of our nation’s health care problems. /s


10 posted on 05/20/2007 11:03:19 AM PDT by Maynerd
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To: John Jorsett

It’s a shame she didn’t try to go to a different hospital the second time around.


11 posted on 05/20/2007 11:03:20 AM PDT by toothfairy86
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To: John Jorsett

I find this story hard to believe. Obviously a single payer government run VA like system will solve all of our nation’s health care problems. /s


12 posted on 05/20/2007 11:03:38 AM PDT by Maynerd
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To: John Jorsett

There has to be more to this story than revealed in this article. I can’t imagine an ER staff just letting someone go like that. If this really happened as it was written, this lady’s next of kin is going to get a huge boost to their bank account.


13 posted on 05/20/2007 11:03:40 AM PDT by KoRn (Just Say NO ....To Liberal Republicans - FRED THOMPSON FOR PRESIDENT!)
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To: calex59

Illegal or not(it didn’t say that she was) hospital neglect does happen, and I’ve heard countless tales of other situations such as this one.


14 posted on 05/20/2007 11:04:14 AM PDT by Santa Fe_Conservative
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To: John Jorsett

And expect a big malpractice jackpot justice suit, which will only further reduce the funds for the collapsed ER system.

Believe it or not, LA had the top trauma care ER systems on earth 30 years ago. Now destroyed by illegal aliens, corrupt managed care, and crooked John Edwards shysters the system in LA (and soon the rest of the US) has totally disintegrated.

The dream of many doctors is to have nothing whatsoever to do with any unreimbursed malpractice nightmare ER.


15 posted on 05/20/2007 11:04:58 AM PDT by FormerACLUmember
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To: Santa Fe_Conservative

But not laying on the floor writhing.

This does sound fishy.

However if they have a security camera showing the woman on the floor and people walking around her that’s different.

But somehow I am suspicious.


16 posted on 05/20/2007 11:06:30 AM PDT by squarebarb
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To: 60Gunner

Ping for your perspective. Could this be a case of frequent flyer who never read the story of “the boy who cried wolf?” (not that it excuses the ER’s conduct). Would a facility such as yours conduct its own incident review of a nationally publicized incident such as this under the “there but for the competence of our staff goes us” premise?


17 posted on 05/20/2007 11:06:54 AM PDT by NonValueAdded (Fred Thompson in 2008 - there is no doubt about it!)
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Comment #18 Removed by Moderator

To: calex59
Having worked for yours in the Emergency Room of several large hospitals, I don't see it happening as told here, either. Of course there are things left out of the story.

I can tell you that so many of the people who use the ER as their doctor's office do learn to work the system. I can remember people walking in and faking heart attacks just to get to the front of the line--when, in actuality, they were suffering from some ailment like a sore throat. It's a very hard call, sometimes-and the fact that the lady had already been there 3 times that day tells me that A: the doctors who saw her misdiagnosed her or B: Something about her had given the ER personnel the idea that she wasn't really sick, that she was gaming the system, for whatever reason.

Either way, it's too bad the lady died---and will be interesting to see what the autopsy shows. If the ER personnel were negligent and either misdiagnosed or failed to diagnose what her problem was, that can be held against them. They will have to be able to show that the right tests were run, and that the results of the tests didn't show anything threatening.

19 posted on 05/20/2007 11:08:42 AM PDT by basil (Support the Second Amendment--buy another gun today!)
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To: calex59
A direct copy/paste from the story on the L.A. Times web site:

"Rodriguez, a California native, performed odd jobs and lived alternately with different relatives."

Why would you assume that the article is to garner sympathy and support for illegals if the poor woman, who was treated as an inconvenience, is a CA native?

20 posted on 05/20/2007 11:10:04 AM PDT by El Gran Salseron (The World-Famous, popular DJ and FReeper Canteen Certified, Equal-Opportunity, Male-Chauvinist-Pig!)
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To: calex59

It’s called propaganda.


21 posted on 05/20/2007 11:10:09 AM PDT by stopem (God Bless the U.S.A the Troops who protect her, and their Commander In Chief !)
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To: John Jorsett

22 posted on 05/20/2007 11:10:58 AM PDT by Gritty (Bipartisan mode when the public is diametrically opposed looks more like a one-party state -Mk Steyn)
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To: John Jorsett
If the hospital fails, it could be forced to close.

If Harbor Hospital closes, who is going to provide the crucial ignoring-to-death services in this underserved community? There is a waiting list of people to be ignored to death. Who is going to take care of them?

23 posted on 05/20/2007 11:11:23 AM PDT by gridlock (On January 20, 2009, Fred Dalton Thompson will be sworn in as President of the United States.)
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Comment #24 Removed by Moderator

To: daddypatriot

What a horrible thing to say.


25 posted on 05/20/2007 11:11:55 AM PDT by tiredoflaundry (The greatest danger to our troops is the Congress of the United States.)
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To: Mr. K
I have sympathy, but is there more to this story? Is there any previous history with this woman? If you cry wolf too often you can’t complain when people finally ignore you.

Actually dying pretty much settles the "crying wolf" question for me.

26 posted on 05/20/2007 11:12:12 AM PDT by John Jorsett (scam never sleeps)
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To: Maynerd
"I find this story hard to believe."

Do you disbelieve, as well, the hospital staff who have seen the videotape?

27 posted on 05/20/2007 11:12:24 AM PDT by El Gran Salseron (The World-Famous, popular DJ and FReeper Canteen Certified, Equal-Opportunity, Male-Chauvinist-Pig!)
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To: CrawDaddyCA

Applause? The statement is repulsive and that’s putting it mildly.


28 posted on 05/20/2007 11:12:35 AM PDT by ShandaLear (Extremists always meet each other full circle.)
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To: calex59

Sad to say this South Central Los Angeles hospital has a long history of unbelievably horrible incidents, which is why their accreditation was yanked in the first place after multiple warnings. This was a case of neighborhood “feelgoodism” over competence, with both the local politicians and community refusing to hear criticism of “their” hospital until it was way too late.

I’ve been in the ER and dealt with people who complain and seem to have nothing wrong, even scream and shout that they are being discriminated against or refused care because they’re not getting exactly what they decided they want. Yes, it is very irritating. However, my cardinal rule is: “If they annoy me, work them up twice as carefully” because otherwise I’m going to miss something someday because I’m irritated at the patient. I’ve gritted my teeth through it many times, but also blessed that rule a time or two - kept me from dismissing someone with a serious problem that took some digging to find.


29 posted on 05/20/2007 11:12:56 AM PDT by retMD
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To: toothfairy86
It’s a shame she didn’t try to go to a different hospital the second time around.

It looks like she did. The police picked her up in front of Willowbrook Hospital, where she was causing a disturbance, and brought her back to MLK/Harbor.

I am not familiar with the area. Is Willowbrook the upscale hospital and Harbor the downscale hospital? Otherwise why transport her from the steps of one hospital to the Emergency Room of another?

30 posted on 05/20/2007 11:14:09 AM PDT by gridlock (On January 20, 2009, Fred Dalton Thompson will be sworn in as President of the United States.)
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To: daddypatriot

Life is cheap to you, isn’t it? And, you can STFU in advance. I don’t care to read anything you have to say.


31 posted on 05/20/2007 11:14:13 AM PDT by ItisaReligionofPeace
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To: CrawDaddyCA; daddypatriot

Except she was born in California.


32 posted on 05/20/2007 11:14:15 AM PDT by wagglebee ("A political party cannot be all things to all people." -- Ronald Reagan, 3/1/75)
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To: basil

Don’t forget the beginning, she was picked up in front of another hospital.

Snip:

Inquiry
click to enlargeIn the emergency room at Martin Luther King Jr.-Harbor Hospital, Edith Isabel Rodriguez was seen as a complainer.

“Thanks a lot, officers,” an emergency room nurse told Los Angeles County police who brought in Rodriguez early May 9 after finding her in front of the Willowbrook hospital yelling for help. “This is her third time here.”

The 43-year-old mother of three had been released from the emergency room hours earlier, her third visit in three days for abdominal pain. She’d been given prescription medication and a doctor’s appointment.


33 posted on 05/20/2007 11:14:33 AM PDT by AliVeritas (I see the men and women on the battlefield... where are the men and women here?)
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To: CrawDaddyCA

Go back to Lousiana.


34 posted on 05/20/2007 11:15:03 AM PDT by ItisaReligionofPeace
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To: basil
"and will be interesting to see what the autopsy shows."

Large perforation in the large bowel.

35 posted on 05/20/2007 11:15:22 AM PDT by El Gran Salseron (The World-Famous, popular DJ and FReeper Canteen Certified, Equal-Opportunity, Male-Chauvinist-Pig!)
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To: John Jorsett
David Janssen, the county's chief administrative officer, said the incident is being taken very seriously.

Some law enforcement officer should check out this guy. I'm suspicious... could be a fugitive or somethin...

36 posted on 05/20/2007 11:15:37 AM PDT by C210N (Bush SPIED, Terrorists DIED!)
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To: John Jorsett

Sounds almost like a scene from the movie “The Hospital” which starred George C. Scott. In that a “paitent” which has already “expired” is asked for their Blue Cross number over and over. It is pretty funny in the movie. Not so funny in real life.


37 posted on 05/20/2007 11:16:48 AM PDT by mc5cents (Show me just what Mohammd brought that was new, and there you will find things only evil and inhuman)
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To: wagglebee

The facts never matter to bigots.


38 posted on 05/20/2007 11:17:00 AM PDT by ShandaLear (Extremists always meet each other full circle.)
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To: basil
...and will be interesting to see what the autopsy shows.

I can diagnose by modem from 3000 miles away that this woman had a ruptured appendix.

Should have had a wicked fever, though. Maybe that's not enough to attract attention at this particular ER.

39 posted on 05/20/2007 11:17:54 AM PDT by gridlock (On January 20, 2009, Fred Dalton Thompson will be sworn in as President of the United States.)
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To: daddypatriot
All that are ignored are not 'garbage', and this woman may not have been either. LA especially is a mess! 2 years ago, my x husband was in a auto accident. Broken leg, ankle, damage from the air bag, etc. The ambulance to him took LA Hospital. Ten days later someone found out where he was. They wouldn't let him use a phone, and hardly anyone could speak English. In all that time, they simply gave him pain meds, never set the broken bones!!!

By the time my kids got to LA and got him to the VA hospital he was nearly dead.

40 posted on 05/20/2007 11:18:38 AM PDT by AuntB (" It takes more than walking across the border to be an American." Duncan Hunter)
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To: jocon307

Yeah...I mean there are on DUTY DOCTORS WHO SHOULD HAVE really looked at this patient....

(not yelling at any-one...just making a point as a 20 year RN who has seen this type of crap in the ER’s of the hospitals I have worked at. It makes my job as an ICU RN more difficult when the families of these patients are in a cranky mood from the treatment they got in our “front end”!)


41 posted on 05/20/2007 11:21:05 AM PDT by mdmathis6
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To: mc5cents
Sounds almost like a scene from the movie “The Hospital” which starred George C. Scott.

It's exactly from that movie. Scott's character does in a doctor by giving him some condition that is fatal but treatable (poisoning maybe? I forget), then parking his unconscious body in the ER where he's "ignored to death."

42 posted on 05/20/2007 11:22:28 AM PDT by John Jorsett (scam never sleeps)
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To: mdmathis6

It doesn’t sound like the patient ever got past the triage nurse - can’t blame the doctors for that.


43 posted on 05/20/2007 11:22:38 AM PDT by retMD
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To: mc5cents

I like the part in that movie where they took out the wrong kidney of a patient and the patient demands being released from the hospital.

George C. Scott says, “You mean we removed the wrong kidney? Yeah, we better release him before we kill him.”

The other part that made me laugh is when he looks out of his window supposedly contemplating what is happening and screams. “We heal nothing! We cure nothing!”


44 posted on 05/20/2007 11:22:43 AM PDT by El Gran Salseron (The World-Famous, popular DJ and FReeper Canteen Certified, Equal-Opportunity, Male-Chauvinist-Pig!)
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To: calex59

Why do you think she is illegal ...

do you have ANY evidence to back up your claim?


45 posted on 05/20/2007 11:23:34 AM PDT by SubGeniusX ($29.95 Guarantees Your Salvation!!! Or TRIPLE Your Money Back!!!)
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To: AuntB

“...never set the broken bones!!!”

Holy freaking crap! Sorry for the language, but that is just unbelievable.

I hope he is OK now.


46 posted on 05/20/2007 11:26:44 AM PDT by jocon307 (The Silent Majority - silent no longer)
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To: ShandaLear

To true ...

and sadly to often here


47 posted on 05/20/2007 11:26:44 AM PDT by SubGeniusX ($29.95 Guarantees Your Salvation!!! Or TRIPLE Your Money Back!!!)
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To: mc5cents
Cool movie “I am the Paraclete of Kaborka!”
48 posted on 05/20/2007 11:30:23 AM PDT by NonValueAdded (Fred Thompson in 2008 - there is no doubt about it!)
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To: El Gran Salseron
Do you disbelieve, as well, the hospital staff who have seen the videotape?

It's time for YouTube.

49 posted on 05/20/2007 11:30:26 AM PDT by Maynerd
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To: ShandaLear

They just assume that anyone with a Hispanic name is an illegal alien. I wonder how many of them are aware that there are Californians of SPANISH descent whose ancestors were American citizens BEFORE the ancestors of many Americans of Irish, Italian, German and eastern European descent.


50 posted on 05/20/2007 11:32:00 AM PDT by wagglebee ("A political party cannot be all things to all people." -- Ronald Reagan, 3/1/75)
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