A shocking incident has come to light from Asante Rogue Regional Medical Center in Oregon, in the US, where several patients have died under mysterious circumstances.
Reports are surfacing that a nurse at the hospital may be responsible for these deaths by giving patients tap water injections, instead of their prescribed medication.
The Medford police are actively investigating the facility after a patient's death raised alarm bells.
The Rogue Valley Times obtained a statement from Medford police officer Lieutenant Geoff Kirkpatrick confirming the ongoing inquiry.
According to sources within the hospital, spoken to under the condition of anonymity, there's a claim that “dozens of patients” could have been affected by such medication alterations.
In a more personal account, the newspaper talked to Garrett Atwood, a man whose brother was 36-years-old when he died.
Tragically, it appears he succumbed to an infection, which was a result of having tap water in his IV bag instead of the prescribed fentanyl.
Atwood revealed that hospital authorities disclosed to him the medication had been “tampered with”.
Another family has also came forward. Diane Rogers, the spouse of 74-year-old Barry Samsten, mentioned her husband's death in July was due to a bacterial infection.
This infection, according to reports by the Daily Beast, was a consequence of swapping his fentanyl for non-sterile tap water.
Furthermore, NBC5 News has shed light on the police probing at least one death at the centre of the scandal, with sources hinting that there could be more fatalities linked to infections from improper injections.
These sources suggest a nurse may have administered tap water to the patients in an attempt to conceal the hospital’s mishandling of pain medications, including the powerful opioid fentanyl.
The Medical Center’s intensive care unit reported that up to nine or 10 people caught infections and later died.
The tap water that was used in the injections were reportedly not sterile and led to multiple infections of pseudomonas, which can be very dangerous to those with weak immune systems.
“It could cause sepsis, pneumonia, it could infect all the organs, so it could be a very severe infection,” said Dr Robin Miller.
Meanwhile, The Asante Rogue Medical Center released a statement saying, “We were distressed to learn of this issue. We reported it to law enforcement and are working closely with them.”
As of press time, no one was arrested or charged, and Medford police provided no more details. They only confirmed there was an open investigation at the medical centre.