After an electric scalpel was carelessly used along with an alcohol-based disinfectant, a 66-year-old Romanian woman was set ablaze in the operation theatre of a hospital. This happened as the woman was undergoing surgery for pancreatic cancer and reportedly died after suffering 40% burns on her body.
A Romanian politician, Emanuel Ungureanu explained that when a flammable disinfectant came in contact with an electric scalpel, combustion was caused. This event thus “ignited" the body like a "torch," added the politician.
The politician also took to his Facebook page and cited the medical staff at 'Floreasca urgent care hospital' in Bucharest to explain the details of the incident.
After the woman's body caught fire, the nurse at the hospital threw a bucket of water on the woman to prevent the fire from spreading. The incident took place on December 22.
The health ministry of Romania said that they would investigate the “unfortunate incident". The victim’s family said medical staff had spoken of an “accident” but declined to offer details.
The deputy minister, Horatiu Moldovan, said, "The surgeons should have been aware that it is prohibited to use an alcohol-based disinfectant during surgical procedures performed with an electric scalpel."
As per media reports, there have been a few improvements in the system after increase in funding. However, the health system in Romania continues to be plagued with a shortage of doctors and finds itself at the heart of repeated scandals.
A former health minister of Romania stands accused of delaying the transfer of burnt victims abroad after the nightclub fire incident in 2015.
The nightclub fire incident killed 64 people, out of which 26 died on-site and 38 others later. Subsequently, many of the patients passed away because of the reported ill-equipped Romanian hospitals. An inquiry is still ongoing.
(With Agency Inputs)