DIJON: CHU reacts to the death of a patient after several postponements of the operation

This Tuesday, November 8, the Dijon health facility tries to defend itself by highlighting the lack of temporary staff assigned to manage emergencies. “Meals ordered, distributed, monitored,” assures the CHU, when there is a question about the patient’s repeated fasting.

This Tuesday, November 8, CHU Dijon Bourgogne presented information during a press conference about the condition of a 77-year-old patient, who went to the emergency room on August 23 for a fracture and died on August 31 after four consecutive interventions. accompanied by periods of fasting.

An autopsy was performed. After a complaint was filed with the Côte d’Or gendarmerie, an investigation is being conducted under the authority of the public prosecutor of Dijon.

The representatives of the health care institution denied that the patient had fasted for four days, on the basis that he was fed daily, and put forward the poor provision of queues for the opening of rooms necessary for the implementation of surgical operations as the responsibility.

“This is a complex medical document that requires an expert eye”

From the beginning, in the preamble, Lucie Ligier, deputy director general of the CHU Dijon Bourgogne, noted that “we want to approach the situation that is the subject of the media relay with genuine compassion.”

“Management of roads in a healthcare facility is sometimes complicated. It is managed by protocols that guarantee the quality and safety of care with skills and a certain number of elements that allow to ensure their correct implementation”, said the representative of the management.

“This is a complex medical document that requires expert review,” said Lucie Ligier, who “very positively” welcomed the establishment of the trial.

“The outcome of this patient’s treatment was unexpected. CHU has carried out its own initial analysis since early September, which requires additional information on the evolution of this file. We have informed our supervisory authority, namely the regional health agency of Bourgogne-Franche-Comté, about both the incident and the first analysis,” he said.

“Meals were ordered, distributed, monitored”

Professor Emmanuel Baulot, head of the department of orthopedic and traumatological surgery for adults, said: “Together with our medical team, we join the deep sorrow and great sadness of the family affected by this unwanted development.”

“I convey all my sympathy and support to this family. The CHU is ready to respond,” added Corinne Calard, chief care coordinator of the Dijon Bourgogne CHU.

Professor Emmanuel Baulot explained: “The subject was a 77-year-old man presenting with a fractured femur and a surgical indication for stabilization intervention was recommended.”

“Due to a series of untimely delays due to the lack of a holiday offer in the emergency services, this intervention could not be carried out within the desired time frame. You know you need competent qualified personnel to be able to operate in a safe and regulatory manner on the patients we offer for surgery to keep the rooms open,” he said.

“These conditions were not met, which meant several consecutive postponements of the patient. Who says that it is repeatedly postponed, the patient is kept on an empty stomach. This patient fasted for several days in a row, but I can assure you that it was under control. After each successive adjournment, food was ordered, food was distributed and these facts were tracked in the file,” Professor Emmanuel Baulot added, insisting that “food was ordered, distributed, tracked.”

According to CHU, the patient received food every day. Fasting refers to a period of six hours before the intervention for solid food and two hours for beverages. “As soon as it is known that the surgical intervention has not taken place, we return to the rhythm of the patient’s nutrition”, – emphasized Lucie Ligier.

“The operation was postponed four times”

“We were talking about a patient with a certain number of co-morbidities who were decompensated due to timely postponements by not providing a surgical session in sufficient time. I believe that the analysis of the file and the continuation of the investigation will bring some clarity to the causes of death. We don’t have the autopsy results,” Professor Emmanuel Baulot continued to explain.

“The operation was postponed four times. For the fifth time, we cannot talk about decompensation being postponed because the patient went to intensive care.”

“It is difficult to manage a situation that limits the number of holidays offered”

The head of the department of orthopedic and traumatological surgery for adults defended the team members who care for the patient, starting with the medical manager: “My colleague who has been working with me for ten years, the medical manager of the department, I fully trust. , who has all the skills, is a specialist in gerontotraumatology, has become a victim of this situation, which is difficult to manage for a long time, as we are, because the number of vacations offered is limited.

Therefore, the head of the department indirectly refers to the number of temporary workers assigned to the health institution by his supervisory authority, while maintaining some uncertainty.

During the summer, the staffing problem was resolved by CHU CEO Dijon Bourgogne during a visit by Health Minister François Browne, while the challenge of having enough nurses in the operating room was a problem during the day. In response to the situation, CHU Dijon Bourgogne is working to establish an operating theater nursing school in its area (read our article).

No contact with family

Now the management of the CHU Dijon Bourgogne “reciprocally feels the need to communicate”, but the exchanges have been frozen by the investigation and no contact has been made with the family.

As Lucie Ligier points out, “filing the complaint was too quick on the part of the family and involved the CHU in a legal process that made it difficult to communicate.”

Jean-Christophe Tardivon

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