New York hospital puts staff on leave during ER patient death investigation

After an emergency department patient died Nov. 7 at Albany (N.Y.) Medical Center, the hospital is investigating the incident and has placed staffers involved on administrative leave, according to The Daily Gazette.

Hospital officials said Albany police and an ambulance crew brought the patient to the ED. The patient was aggressive and belligerent, and staffers tried to calm the patient several times, according to hospital officials.  

"On the order of a physician, and with the agreement of the patient, a medication to calm the patient was administered," the hospital stated. "Despite these efforts, it became necessary to attempt to restrain the patient in an effort to prevent injury to staff, others in the emergency department, or to the patient."

The patient and hospital staff involved were both hurt when staffers applied restraints.

"Immediately after the patient was restrained and could be re-evaluated, it was determined that the patient had stopped breathing and had no pulse," the statement read.

Revival efforts failed, and the patient was pronounced dead.

Hospital officials said the patient's cause of death has not been determined. An autopsy and toxicology tests will be conducted.

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