The former director of Hadassah Hospital Ein Kerem, along with four other doctors and a nurse, are facing possible indictment for malpractice and negligence.
According to a statement from the Justice Ministry, the potential charges relate to the Jerusalem hospital’s alleged failure to address concerns raised by anesthesiologist Yuval Meroz over a carbon dioxide tank that was installed in one of the hospital’s operating rooms in 2009.
Meroz, who worried that the carbon dioxide tank resembled an oxygen tank and could be mistakenly used during an operation, reportedly warned hospital director Yuval Weiss of the danger. However, the carbon dioxide tank remained in place.
During an operation in January 2011, hospital staff accidentally connected an infant’s respirator to the carbon dioxide tank instead of the oxygen tank — as Meroz had warned may happen — resulting in the infant remaining unconscious after the operation. The baby also sustained brain damage, but a Justice Ministry statement emphasized that the brain damage is not being attributed to the suspects.
Despite this incident, which all the suspects were aware was caused by the mistaken use of the carbon dioxide tank, the tank remained in place for an additional four months. During this period, Meroz is said to have repeatedly warned hospital management of the continued danger.
In addition to Weiss, the other suspects were named as doctors Oz Shapira, Charles Weissman, Yoram Weiss and Giora Landesberg, as well as Yitzhak Kara, a nurse at the hospital.