Anesthesiologist Raynaldo Rivera Ortiz Jr., MD, is asking to be released from jail after pleading not guilty to allegations he injected heart-stopping drugs into IV bags at Baylor Scott & White Surgicare North Dallas, NBC 5 Dallas-Fort Worth reported Nov. 2.
According to prosecutors, he allegedly injected IV bags with bupivacaine, epinephrine and lidocaine, which caused almost a dozen patients to experience unexpected cardiac emergencies.
Dr. Ortiz has been in custody since Sept. 19 when a judge deemed him a flight risk and a danger to the community, according to the report. On Nov. 2, Dr. Ortiz’s attorney filed a motion to reconsider, saying the judge’s logic that Dr. Ortiz was a danger to the community was flawed.
"If [Dr. Ortiz] committed the charged offenses, he is not in a position to do so again," Mr. Nicholson wrote in the seven-page motion, according to NBC. "He knows he is carefully watched. He cooperated (with) his arrest."
The investigation began after the death of fellow anesthesiologist Melanie Kaspar, MD, who worked at the ASC, died June 21. She was originally thought to have had a heart attack, but the Dallas County Medical Examiner ruled her death to be from the effects of bupivacaine. According to the board, she took an IV bag home with her when she was ill to rehydrate, inserted the IV into her vein and had a serious cardiac event and died.