Brisbane (Australia), Feb.12 (ANI): Indian-born surgeon Dr. Jayant Patel a.k.a. "Dr. Death" lied to the families of patients he operated upon, claimed a nurse.
Bundaberg Base Hospital intensive care unit nurse Karen Stumer told a Brisbane Magistrates Court here today that Patel often lied about the success of his operations, even as his patients' health was deteriorating.
The news.com.au quoted Stumer as telling the court that she overheard Dr.Patel telling the family of James Phillips that he was stable after an oesophagacetomy in May 2003.
Stumer said this concerned nursing staff, as they knew he was in a very serious condition.
"He wasn't improving, he was actually deteriorating," she said.
Phillips died just days after Dr Patel's operation.
Patel, 58, is facing 14 charges, including three of manslaughter, relating to his time as director of surgery at the Bundaberg hospital from 2003 to 2005.
Stumer told the court she recalled Dr Patel making similarly positive comments to other families of very sick patients. Dr Patel also, she said, recorded incorrect information on patients' charts to show a stable or improving condition.
"Did those patients recover?" crown prosecutor David Meredith asked.
"They were extremely unwell. Most of them died," Stumer said.tumer also said Dr Patel rarely listened to the advice of his colleagues and that he often refused to transfer patients to Brisbane because he wanted to treat them himself.
She said other staff members would organise transfers on weekends when Dr Patel wasn't there so as to avoid conflict.
The court earlier heard Dr Patel accused nurses of trying to hold up his theatre when they drew his attention to the excessive bleeding of a patient, who later died.
The hearing continues. (ANI)