Public Health report: CA woman left unattended before disappearance

California public health inspectors determined that hospital staff failed to constantly observe a patient who wandered out of her hospital room and was found dead in a stairwell more than two weeks later, Seattle PI reported. After initial instructions to check on 57-year-old Lynne Spalding--who was admitted to San Francisco General Hospital with a bladder infection, unexplained weight loss, sepsis and disorientation--a doctor then ordered staff provide around-the clock supervision for the woman when she wandered out to the nurses station and spoke nonsensically. But the nurse who received the instructions "did not get a chance" to enter the patient care information in the medical record to pass along to the workers on the following shifts. Spalding went missing Sept. 21 and her body was discovered in a locked stairwell Oct. 8. Investigators' findings contradict hospital statements that claim Spalding was only supposed to be checked on every 15 minutes, and inspectors found she was unsupervised for at least 40 minutes before she disappeared. San Francisco sheriff deputies also failed to conduct a thorough search for the woman, checking only four of the hospital's 10 stairwells after she went missing. Article

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