Italian Nurse Kills 13 Elderly Patients With Blood-thinning drug, Heparin
A 55 year-old nurse whom police has called “hospital ward killer” has been arrested, Thursday, for the murder of thirteen elderly patients at a hospital in Piombino, a city on the Tuscan coast.
The aged woman had worked in the hospital for decades before she began killing her victims in 2014 and 2015 by “administering lethal doses of a blood-thinning drug into her victims’ intravenous drips”.
Police said her ministrations caused twelve to die of internal bleeding and one of cardiac arrest.
The woman whose identity wasn’t disclosed killed men and women aged between 61 and 88. Her victims’ autopsies showed their bloodstream to have “10 times the normal dose of the drug Heparin”. They all weren’t on prescription for the blood-thinning drug, Heparin.
Carabinieri police commander, Gennero Riccardi, told reporters: “The suspect was the only member of hospital staff working when all 13 of the suspicious deaths occurred”.
Riccardi said when the hospital spotted the woman as the suspect of the alarming murders last October, “she was transferred out of intensive care in October of last year, the mortality rate of the ward fell from 20 percent to 12 percent”.
He also added the suspect “‘suffers from depression’ and had been receiving ‘psychological treatment for many years'”.
The nurse was detained, Wednesday, after she returned from a holiday with her husband.
Police said: “The families of the victims have not yet been informed that their relatives may have been murdered”.
In a statement by Health Minister Beatrice Lorenzin, she called the case “chilling and hideous”.
She said: “It isn’t the first time that nurses have been found to be serial killers”.
In a similar situation, the city of Ravena witnessed a nurse in one of her hospitals receive a “life sentence for murdering a patient with lethal injection of potassium”.
The Ravena nurse who appealed her conviction is also under investigation for ten more suspicious deaths.