St. Lukes Pledges Change After Botched Transfusion Kills Patient

HOUSTON — A botched blood transfusion for a 75-year-old woman last year resulted in her death from cardiac arrest, according to a report from the Department of Health and Human Services.

According to the report, the woman came to the emergency room suffering from a brain hemorrhage and was admitted to the intensive care unit, where she received a blood transfusion about 12 hours later.

Within hours of the transfusion, the patient had suffered multiple cardiac arrests and died the next day.

But this particular failure at Baylor St. Luke’s Medical Center was just one of more than 100 that happened in a period of less than six months. While some of the errors were administrative, others were related to the mishandling of bloods products. Additionally, there were deficiencies found in other sectors of the hospital.

On Tuesday, Dr. Doug Lawson, who became the president of Baylor St. Luke’s in mid-January, released the report, along with an open letter to patients and staff.

“I’m sharing results of a recent hospital review that is deeply disappointing to me, our Board of Directors, and our entire Baylor St. Luke’s family because they describe patient care activities that simply does not meet our standards or expectations,” Lawson said in his statement. “It is our responsibility to learn from these mistakes, and we take this responsibility very seriously. An incident like this should never happen.”

The deficiency reports and remedies can be found below:

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Lawson said the Baylor St. Lukes has begun making corrections to the deficiencies at the campus, which included a number of personnel changes.

“While we cannot go back and change the past, we can focus our efforts on recreating the Baylor St. Luke’s you have known and trusted,” Lawson said. “To our patients, their families, our employees and physicians, and the people of this city and region we serve, we will take the steps needed to ensure Baylor St. Luke’s fulfills our mission of care and compassion. I believe we will emerge stronger than ever.”

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