Cedars-Sinai Medical Center has been fined $25,000 for the staff errors that led to overdoses of blood thinners being administered to three infants, including Dennis Quaid's newborn twins, Thomas Boone and Zoe Grace, in November.
The California Department of Public Health, which determined the penalty, cited the prominent Los Angeles hospital in January after an investigation found "multiple failures by the facility to adhere to established policies and procedures for safe medication use."
"The hospitals take this extremely seriously," state deputy director Kathleen Billingsley told the Los Angeles Times Thursday. Cedars was one of 11 facilities fined for various violations, she said.
Thomas and Zoe Quaid, born 10 days beforehand to Quaid and wife Kimberly via a surrogate, were at Cedars on Nov. 18 being treated for staph infections when they were given 1,000-times—10,000 units per milliliter rather than 10—the proper dosage of heparin, an anticlotting drug regularly used to flush out intravenous lines.
After a nurse discovered blood oozing from Zoe's arm where her IV was attached, they diagnosed the problem and quickly administered protamine sulfate, which reverses the effects of heparin. Both babies made a quick recovery and, as far as their parents are concerned, are in excellent health today. (The third infant involved suffered no complications.)
At the time, Cedars Chief Medical Officer Dr. Michael L. Langberg copped to a series of safety lapses at the hospital at the time, apologizing to the affected families and ensuring that actions were being taken and policies reconfigured to prevent a similar occurrence.
But the memory of that nightmarish time when they didn't know their children's fate still apparently weighs on the Quaids, who, in a 60 Minutes interview Sunday, called that day the "scariest, most frightening day…that either of us have ever been through."