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Monday
Sep262011

Brazil: Daughter Finds ‘Dead’ Mother Alive in Morgue

iStockphoto/Thinkstock(RIO DE JANEIRO) -- Rosangela Celestrino of Brazil was devastated when she got the call to come identify her mother’s body at a hospital in Rio de Janeiro. But when she arrived and the body was pulled out of the refrigerated drawer, Celestrino was shocked to find that her mother was still alive.

“I went to kiss my mom, and she was breathing. I began to scream, ‘My mom is alive!’ and everyone looked at me like I was crazy,” she told the Brazilian newspaper O Globo.

Rosa Celestrino de Assis, 60, spent two hours inside a plastic bag in the refrigerated drawer of a hospital morgue. She had been admitted to the Hospital Estadual Adao Pereira Nunes for a pulmonary infection.

At 7:20 p.m. last Friday, a nurse at the hospital called the on-call doctor when she noticed that Assis was not showing any signs of life. The doctor ran some tests and pronounced her dead. Celestrino de Assis was taken to the morgue. When the daughter found her mother alive at 10 p.m., the hospital sent her back to the intensive care unit.

“She made some sort of movement and was immediately taken to the ICU, intubated again and put on a respirator,” hospital director Manoel Moreira Filho told O Globo.

The nurse who first suspected Celestrino de Assis was dead has been fired, and the doctor who pronounced her dead resigned. The family has made a police complaint. If negligence is proved, the family could sue for personal injury and if the patient were to die, they could sue for manslaughter.

Celestrino de Assis’ shocked daughter is still struggling to understand what happened.

“You go to the hospital to pick up someone you know -- who put you on the earth -- and not only is she in the cold drawer of a hospital, but when I opened it, I saw that she was alive,” Celestrino said.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio







ABC News Radio