November 20, 2011
A family is grieving after a nurse at a South Florida hospital allegedly gave their loved one the wrong medication, causing his death.
Local10.com reports that North Shore Medical Center in Miami, FL admitted 79-year-old Richard Smith in July 2010 because he was suffering shortness of breath and complained of an upset stomach.
When Smith’s son later arrived at the hospital, a doctor told him that a nurse grabbed the wrong package and gave his father a medication that caused respiratory distress, according to WSVN.com.
The Daily-Mail identified the nurse as Uvo Ologboride.
Florida Department of Health disciplinary records for Uvo Ologboride show that Smith’s doctor prescribed 20 mg of Famotidine (branded Pepcid, Calmicid, Fluxid and Mylanta AR), a histamine-2 blocker that reduces stomach acid, intravenously (IV) twice per day.
However, the nurse administered 20 mg of Pancuronium bromide (Pabulon), a muscle relaxant used in hospitals during respiratory intubation and as one of a three-drug cocktail in executions by lethal injection. Pancuronium bromide is a paralytic that stops breathing and other bodily functions, but is not an anesthetic that alters consciousness.
30 minutes later hospital staff found Smith unresponsive. They resuscitated him but he never recovered and died a few weeks later.
An investigation by the state found that Ologboride failed to perform safeguards in place to prevent medication errors such as failure to read the medication label, failure to scan the medication and failure to scan Smith’s patient ID bracelet, reports The Daily-Mail.
Under a settlement agreement with the state in March 2011, Ologboride agreed to pay $750 in administrative fees and investigative costs in an amount not exceeding $2,885. The agreement also requires the nurse to take some educational classes.
Ologvoride still works at North Shore Medical Center.
According to Local10.com, Smith’s family has filed a lawsuit against North Shore Medical Center.