You probably heard about the medical overdose of actor Dennis Quaid's newborn twins last year in a Los Angeles hospital.
Now the story you haven't heard.
A Wilkes-Barre mom speaks out for the first time about what happened to her twins in a Pa. hospital. It's frighteningly similar to the Quaid case, except there is no happy Hollywood ending. Lu Ann Cahn and the NBC 10 investigators got the exclusive story.
A hospital gave Tiffany Green’s twins too much medication the day after they were born. And, now, one is dead because of that mistake.
The state found Geisinger Medical Center in Danville, Pa. gave Tiffany Green’s newborns a large dose of an antibiotic called Azithromycin. The last person to check the twin’s dosage was a newly hired resident pharmacist in training who came to the hospital with “little experience in pediatric dosing,” as shown in a state health report.
Although the twins were born two months premature on August 24, 2007, Naveah and Josiah were healthy little babies, according to Green’s attorney, Matt Casey from Ross Feller Casey, LLP in Philadelphia.
After the incident, Josiah developed a documented brain injury and is at risk for major cardiac complications for the rest of his life, Casey said. Nevaeh struggled to breathe after the accident, and was fed through a tube until she died three months after she was born, he added.
In a written statement Geisinger Health Systems says that after reviewing the case they “immediately took corrective measures, redoubling the checks and balances related to the preparation of medications intended for infants. This would take a double check system and make it a triple check protocol.”
Last year, when Dennis Quaid testified before Congress after the near death of his newborn twins he called for drug companies to create better labeling and hospital pharmacies to use a bar code system.
A National Pharmacy Error expert points out the need to improve safety in hospitals. He agrees with Quaid that newer high-tech systems could reduce errors.
Most hospitals in the Philadelphia area report already using a bar code. Geisinger Medical Center where Green's twins were born said it would install a bar code system sometime in the future. But, a spokesperson told NBC 10’s Cahn he doesn’t know if bar coding would have made a difference in the Green case.
Tiffany Green is suing Geisinger Health Systems.
“They need to know that they just can't do something like this to a baby and get away with it,” Green said.
- The Quaid Foundation
Read and share stories of medical errors to break the conspiracy of silence by raising public awareness of the broken medical system.
- Institute for Safe Medication Practices
A nonprofit organization that educates consumers and members of the health care community about safe medication practices.
- Quality Assurance Facility Directory PA
Look up hospital inspections and reports records anywhere in Pennsylvania by clicking on the hospitals county on the map.