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Report: Nurses at San Francisco hospital didn't heed orders to watch patient


By Associated Press
Posted: February 2, 2014 - 5:30 pm ET
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A newspaper is reporting that nurses at a San Francisco hospital didn't heed a doctor's orders to maintain a constant watch on a patient who ended up leaving her room and was found dead in a stairwell 17 days later.

Citing the results of a CMS investigation, the San Francisco Chronicle says a doctor had instructed staff at San Francisco General Hospital in writing never to leave Lynne Spalding unattended.

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Spalding was admitted on Sept. 19 for a bladder infection and disorientation. A day later, after the 57-year-old woman had wandered into a nursing station, a doctor reminded a nurse that the patient needed around-the-clock observation.

The report contradicts the account hospital officials gave after Spalding's body was discovered. They said nurses were instructed to check on Spalding every 15 minutes.


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