ATHENS – A prosecutor has ordered an inquiry into the death of a 67-year-old heart attack patient to determine whether a surgeon who allegedly refused to operate on him unless paid a 1500-euro bribe has any responsibility in the man’s passing.
The patient underwent a quadruple bypass at the capital’s Evangelismos Hospital on July 12 and died in the institution’s intensive-care unit the following day.
The man’s family had charged the procedure was delayed for 18 days because a heart sugeon asked for a bribe but they turned him into police who arrested him. Neither he nor the patient were named. Another surgeon subsequently performed the operation, but the man died of a heart attack shortly thereafter.
A coroner who examined the body of the 67-year-old concluded he had suffered a series of heart attacks, both recent and older incidents, Kathimerini said.
According to Nikos Karakoukis’s initial assessment, the patient had suffered one heart attack a long time before his admission to the hospital and probably another two more recently.
Toxicology tests are to be carried out and the results, expected in about 10 days, should give a more accurate picture and indicate to what extent the surgeon’s procrastination led to the patient’s death.
The investigation is to be overseen by the police’s internal affairs department and will also focus on the depositions of the deceased’s relatives. A parallel probe is being carried out by the hospital’s management.