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22 September, 2019
 
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Family cries foul over post mortem

Woman’s funeral delayed as daughter pens letter to minister accusing hospital of dirty tricks

Newsroom

The family of an elderly woman, who died in the Emergency Room at Larnaca General last week, is preparing to sue the government for negligence and obstruction of medical justice.

According to local media, the family of a 72-year-old woman who died of a heart attack at Larnaca General Hospital’s ER on August 14, has written a letter to Health Minister Constantinos Ioannou seeking answers to what they described as “pressure” from health administrative officials.

The daughter of the deceased was said to have been trying to get a special court order for a post mortem in the presence of family-appointed forensic pathologist Panikos Stavrianos, who was ready to attend a previously twice-postponed procedure.

But the family says while Stavrianos was open to moving things around in his schedule to attend the post mortem, the procedure was finally pushed back to a time conflict when he had to appear in an unrelated criminal trial as a witness.

The post mortem was then pushed back to a time conflict when the family-appointed forensic pathologist had to appear in court in an unrelated case

According to Philenews, the family was troubled over many obstacles in their effort to have Stavrianos as their representative during the post mortem. The family reportedly argued there were even efforts to block Stavrianos from attending the procedure altogether.

State forensic pathologist Sofocles Sofocleous, who leads the state’s forensic team, has been asked to respond to the allegations, according to ministry officials.

Philenews reported that Sofocleous had notified ministry officials of possible health risks to public health in connection with the woman’s post mortem, adding the procedure required special decontamination procedures at the morgue due to in-hospital, health-care associated infections in her case.

The elderly woman was initially an in-patient at Larnaca General Hospital when she was admitted on May 28 with severe abdominal pain. Following two months of treatment in connection with water in the lungs, she was then transferred to Nicosia General for thoracic surgery and then taken back to the ICU at Larnaca, where she was discharged on August 14. She was then taken to a rehabilitation centre but rushed back to the ER hours later where she went into cardiac arrest and passed away.

Reports said the woman’s funeral was scheduled for Tuesday but it did not take place, with the family said to be contemplating legal action following the death of their loved one.

TAGS
Cyprus  |  Larnaca  |  medical negligence  |  post mortem  |  hospital  |  medical  |  ministry  |  health  |  legal action

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