Appalled

Plastic surgeon Iraj Zandi says staffers at a Fremont, Calif., surgery center found that nurse Jennifer Bales had removed the painkiller Demerol from vials and replaced it with saline. Any nurse would know the consequences for a patient: pain during surgery and possibly serious infection from unsterile saline, the surgeon said. Zandi alerted police and reported Bales to California’s Board of Registered Nursing. In December 2006, Bales was found guilty of embezzlement for stealing drugs and hypodermic needles. But it would be another year before the nursing board filed an accusation. She failed to respond and her license was revoked in 2008.
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( Liz O. Baylen / Los Angeles Times )

Plastic surgeon Iraj Zandi says staffers at a Fremont, Calif., surgery center found that nurse Jennifer Bales had removed the painkiller Demerol from vials and replaced it with saline. Any nurse would know the consequences for a patient: pain during surgery and possibly serious infection from unsterile saline, the surgeon said. Zandi alerted police and reported Bales to California’s Board of Registered Nursing. In December 2006, Bales was found guilty of embezzlement for stealing drugs and hypodermic needles. But it would be another year before the nursing board filed an accusation. She failed to respond and her license was revoked in 2008.

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