Authorities in France have launched an investigation into the death of a Martinique woman who passed away while waiting for treatment at Lariboisière Hospital in Paris, according to media reports.
Micheline Myrtil, aged 55, was reportedly brought to the emergency department by firefighters around 6:45 p.m. on Monday, Dec. 17. She was then registered but was found dead at 6 a.m. in the waiting room the following day, according to reports. Hospital staff thought she had gone home after they called her at 1:20 a.m. and got no answer, officials said.
The incident has not only angered her family, but have captured national headlines in France, and caused quite a stir in the French territories, especially in Martinique, according to reports.
The family plans to take legal action against the hospital. They said the circumstances surrounding Myrtil’s death still do not add up, almost a week after the incident.
According to RTL news, the deceased woman’s niece, Jessy, said: “We know that she arrived at the hospital, she had fever. She was not seen by any doctor; 12 hours is huge!”
Jessy said the family is distraught and shocked because Myrtil, who lived alone in Paris and had no children, was in good health and had no prior illness.
“My aunt was playing sports, she was taking care of herself,” her niece stated. ” … if there was a failure somewhere, I want to know.”
RTL reported that the deceased’s family does not understand how she could stay for “12 hours on a stretcher, totally isolated, without a service, realizing that someone is dying” is clearly a sign of negligence, adding “the efficiency is not there, it’s unacceptable, they have to do their work thoroughly”.
According to media reports an “internal investigation” led by the Public Assistance-Hospitals of Paris (AP-HP) and the Regional Health Agency of Ile-de-France, has been launched.
The AP-HP said in a statement that the first report of the internal investigation will be made “early January”.
The AP-HP further reported in the statement (after translation) that “Micheline was taken care of Monday by the firefighters, then led to the hospital emergency department, Lariboisière…18:45. She was met by the reception(ist) and orientation nurse, registered in the circuit of support of the service… which concerns, in general, the cases judged the least serious and requiring a simple consultation. At 1:20 a.m., after being called without success, the patient is considered to have gone out and is found dead at around 6:00 a.m. in the waiting room of the emergency reception service”.
According to the statement, the internal investigation will include “analyzing the patient’s management process, compliance with good practices and recommendations” and “making more general recommendations on the functioning” of emergency services.
The family are taking steps to repatriate the body before they take legal action, according to reports.