Rotterdam nurse to be prosecuted for at least 11 insulin ODs with 4 deaths

Vials of Insulin
Stock image showing vials of insulin. 3 November 2015. photo: Alan Levine / Flickr

The Public Prosecution Service is definitely prosecuting Rotterdam nurse Rahiied A. for 11 cases of administering unnecessary insulin to patients in Rotterdam nursing homes. In four cases, the patient died as a result, the Prosecutor announced on Friday morning during a sixth pro-forma hearing in this case, reports.

The 22-year-old nurse is accused of giving elderly patients insulin without necessity, making them sick or killing them. He is charged with murder and attempted murder.

A. worked at four different healthcare institutions in the Rotterdam region - De Wetering in Rotterdam, De Riederborgh and Jasmijnhuis in Ridderkerk, and 't Huys te Hoecke in Puttershoek. He was arrested in November 2017 when a woman died after being given insulin without her needing it. Several bodies were exhumed in the subsequent investigation. 

Early in December the Prosecutor already announced that A. would be prosecuted for 10 cases, four in which the victim died and six in which they became sick. At the time the Prosecutor was still investigating two cases. A total of four cases have been dismissed.

In all four institutions where A. worked, the Healthcare Inspectorate found shortcomings in the areas of personnel policy, expertise of employees, and medication safety. Measures have since been taken to address most of these shortcomings. Though some measures still need to be taken on a number of aspects. The Inspectorate will keep a close eye on developments and evaluate the improvements in mid-2019.

"These were exceptional events in which neither the Inspectorate nor the care providers took into account that this could happen", the Inspectorate said about the charges against A. "The deliberate nature means that it can never be entirely ruled out that such incidents will not occur in the future. At the same time we want to do everything possible to minimize the chance that this will happen again."