State Investigates Mortuary Practices at Sacramento Hospital
The Department of Health Services will investigate Kaiser Permanente Medical Center in Sacramento after the release to a funeral home of a deceased infant's remains with the remains of deceased infant twins, the Sacramento Bee reports.
The infants, who all died at the hospital within the same timeframe, were buried in the same grave, resulting in an exhumation. Kaiser officials confirmed that the remains of the twins had been placed together and that the single infant's remains were separate.
Kaiser spokesperson Kathleen McKenna said, "Obviously, our policies weren't followed, and the employee involved in releasing the bodies did not double-check the identities." She added, "We deeply regret the situation."
DHS spokesperson Patti Roberts said, "If we determine there are deficiencies, the hospital is required to submit an acceptable plan of correction to fix them."
Sherrie Moffett-Bell, chief of the Cemetery and Funeral Bureau for the Department of Consumer Affairs, said DCA had opened an investigation into the funeral home and that it could receive a citation or face other disciplinary action (Griffith, Sacramento Bee, 5/25).