Attorneys identify another patient from Mount Carmel West fentanyl deaths

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COLUMBUS – Attorneys representing several families of patients who are believed to have died after receiving excessive doses of fentanyl have identified the youngest patient to date – a 37-year-old man.

Attorney Craig Tuttle says 37-year old James Nickolas Timmons was brought into Mount Carmel West Hospital in late October for a suspected overdose of cocaine. Tuttle said that the autopsy showed Timmons had a mix of cocaine and fentanyl in his system when he died. While Tuttle acknowledged that his law firm is still waiting on additional patient records from Mount Carmel West hospital, he said Timmons’ was among the families who the hospital had notified.

To date, 27 near-death or intensive care patients have been identified by the hospital as having received excessive amounts of fentanyl.

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“These patients’ families had requested that all-life saving measures be stopped, yet the amount of medicine the doctor ordered was more than what was needed to provide comfort,” the hospital said in a statement released last week.

Mount Carmel’s president and CEO, Ed Lamb, also released a video statement apologizing to the families of the patients.

“We apologize for this tragedy,” Lamb said. “And we’re truly sorry for the additional grief this may cause these families.”

Reached by phone last week, Husel declined to comment and urged a 10 Investigates reporter to contact his attorney. His attorneys have declined to comment. Additional attempts to reach Husel have been unsuccessful. Mount Carmel has fired Husel.

Twenty caregivers – including 14 nurse and 6 pharmacists – have been removed from patient care while the hospital investigates.

A hospital spokeswoman has said that Mount Carmel first became aware of concerns about patient care in late October and received more detailed allegations in late November.

So far, three wrongful death lawsuits have been filed. More are expected.

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