The violations could have caused "serious injury or death," California officials say

By People Staff
Updated January 09, 2008 09:10 PM
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Cedars-Sinai Medical Center was cited by California regulators for placing Dennis Quaid’s newborn twins in immediate jeopardy by giving them 1,000 times the proper dosage of medication, the Los Angeles Times reports.

“This violation involved multiple failures by the facility to adhere to established policies and procedures for safe medication use,” the Department of Public Health writes in a 20-page report. “These violations caused, or were likely to cause, serious injury or death to the patients who received the wrong medication.”

The hospital overmedicated a total of three children with the blood thinner heparin on Nov. 18. The hospital has said a “preventable error” occurred with the three patients and that a “series of changes” have since been made in training and procedures.

“The Department of Public Health’s investigation and report of how the heparin error occurred is a confirmation of our own internal findings about the error, which we previously shared last November,” Michael L. Langberg, chief medical officer for Cedars, said in a statement.

State regulators haven’t decided whether to fine Cedars-Sinai for the lapses, Kathleen Billingsley, deputy director of the Center for Healthcare Quality, tells the Times, but she notes the hospital cooperated with the investigation.