Cleaner Polishes Off Patients.
South African Health – Pelonomi Hospital
Date: 26 July 1996 10:08
“For several months, our nurses have been baffled to find a dead
patient in the same bed every Friday morning” a spokeswoman for
the Pelonomi Hospital (Free State, South Africa) told reporters.
“There was no apparent cause for any of the deaths, and extensive
checks on the air conditioning system, and a search for possible
bacterial infection, failed to reveal any clues.” “However,
further inquiries have now revealed the cause of these deaths.
It seems that every Friday morning a cleaner would enter the
ward, remove the plug that powered the patient’s life support
system, plug her floor polisher into the vacant socket, then go
about her business. When she had finished her chores, she would
plug the life support machine back in and leave, unaware that the
patient was now dead. She could not, after all, hear the screams
and eventual death rattle over the whirring of her polisher.
“We are sorry, and have sent a strong letter to the cleaner in
question. Further, the Free State Health and Welfare Department
is arranging for an electrician to fit an extra socket, so there
should be no repetition of this incident. The inquiry is now