Texas doctor arrested on federal charges in colleague’s tainted IV death

Federal brokers arrested a Texas anesthesiologist accused of tampering with IV baggage that led to a colleague’s dying and sparked a sequence of terrifying working room emergencies, officers stated Thursday.

Dr. Raynaldo Rivera Ortiz Jr. was arrested Wednesday in Plano and charged with tampering with a shopper product and deliberately adulterating medication, offenses that would result in life behind bars, federal prosecutors stated.

Ortiz had been suspended within the wake of a legal investigation associated to the June 21 death of Dr. Melanie Kasper, 55, in response to the order of temporary suspension the Texas Medical Board issued Friday.

She died after she used an IV bag she had from the clinic the place she and Ortiz labored. Kasper took the bag “dwelling together with her when she was unwell, to rehydrate,” the suspension order stated.

An post-mortem revealed she was the sufferer of “a deadly dose of bupivacaine,” federal authorities stated.

On or about Aug. 24, an 18-year-old male affected person “skilled a cardiac emergency throughout a scheduled surgical procedure” as he needed to be “intubated and transferred to an area ICU,” federal authorities stated in an announcement.

A saline IV bag used within the teen affected person’s process confirmed the presence of the stimulant epinephrine, bupivacaine and lidocaine.

There have been 10 different “extra surprising cardiac emergencies” on the middle from Could to August, and not one of the incidents occurred throughout any of Ortiz’s surgical procedures, officers stated.

In one of many issues, authorities stated surveillance video confirmed Ortiz “strolling rapidly from an working room to the bag hotter, putting a single IV bag inside, visually scanning the empty hallway, and rapidly strolling away.”

Then, an hour later, a “56-year-old lady suffered a cardiac emergency throughout a scheduled beauty surgical procedure after a bag from the hotter was used throughout her process,” federal officers stated.

Whereas authorities did not explicitly listing a motive for the alleged crimes, a complain stated “Dr. Ortiz had a historical past of disciplinary actions towards him, expressed concern to different physicians over disciplinary motion on the facility, and complained the middle was making an attempt to ‘crucify’ him,” the Justice Division stated in an announcement.

It wasn’t instantly clear Thursday afternoon whether or not Ortiz had employed a protection lawyer or been assigned counsel to talk on his behalf.


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