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Sunday 16 June, 2024
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Kevin Reid placed in body bag, taken to morgue while he was still alive

BY Anas Shah Oct 06, 2022. 02:56 pm UPDATED: Oct 06, 2022. 02:56 pm

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According to reports, a corpse bag with the 55-year-old patient still inside was used to transport him to the morgue while he was receiving palliative care at a hospital.

The allegations, which include claims that a physician at Rockingham General Hospital was asked to backdate the man’s death certificate but refused, are being looked into by the coroner’s court. According to reports, on September 5, the man—who has since been named as Kevin Reid—was reportedly in a medical ward when nursing staff determined he had passed away and contacted his family. Even though there was no official death certificate, he was then taken to the mortuary. When asked to certify the man’s death the following day, a doctor made a startling finding.

According to Business News, the doctor’s testimony sent to the coroner’s office revealed that Reid’s eyes were open, “frank blood” was discovered on his hospital gown, and he was lying in a different posture than how he had been laid down. The doctor stated in his report to the coroner that “I believe the frank blood from a new skin tear, arm position, and ocular indications were inconsistent with a person who was post-mortem on arrival at the mortuary.” He gave the date of the man’s death as September 6, but senior employees apparently pressured him to backdate it.

The doctor, however, refused to do so and notified their department head. “I also specifically asked about open disclosure and coronial discussions to which I was told the executive team would ensure this occurred if deemed necessary,” the report added.

“When the bag is unzipped, according to the report that’s been sent to the coroner, there are telltale signs that the patient could not have been post-mortem, could not have been deceased at the time they were placed in the bag,” Business News reporter Gary Adshead told Radio 6PR about the bizarre incident. “The doctor has noted that he observed what they call ‘frank blood’, which is very present fresh blood, from a skin tear that was on the arm of the patient. The arm positions were not correct either compared to the way that they had been placed after they were supposedly passed, and the eyes were open. The doctor knew full well that last rites had been performed, and the eyes had been shut.”

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Inquiries into the state’s health system should be launched by the Crime and Corruption Commission and a Royal Commission, according to WA Deputy Liberal Leader Libby Mettam, who described the alleged act “absolutely unforgivable and horrible.” Our thoughts are with the family of the 55-year-old who is mentioned in these allegations, she continued.

The reports that Reid had been put into a body bag before he passed away, however, were vehemently refuted by Paul Forden, the chief executive of South Metropolitan Health Service. The hospital, according to him, has opened its own investigation.

“The investigation is into procedures following the death of a patient not into whether the patient was deceased,” Forden said on Thursday. “I’ve talked to some senior pathologists and senior doctors, the human body is a complex organism and actually there is movement post-mortem, rigor mortis fluids are discharged close to death,” he added.

 

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