Mother: Daughter overdosed due to "negligent" school nurse


POSTED: Wednesday, March 13, 2013 - 10:00am

UPDATED: Monday, April 28, 2014 - 7:48am

Jetzabel Argueta is devastated, confused, and angry after she says she almost lost her only child.

Nine-year old Laishla is a student at Vilas Elementary School. She’s a die-hard Justin Beiber fan, and loves her stuffed animals.

But unlike her friends, Laishla is a diabetic, and so, last Friday during her lunch hour, she went to the school nurse to get her daily insulin shot. But a few hours later, something unexpected happened, and that’s when her mother says it all went wrong.

“The nurse called me and told me that my daughter really wasn’t feeling well, that she was shivering a lot, that she had a hard time speaking, and that she looked really pale,” said Jetzabel.

Laishla was losing consciousness. Jetzabel immediately left work to pick her up, and when she got to the school, she couldn't understand why her daughter was having such a bad reaction to the medication.

But then, the school nurse showed Jetzabel the syringe she used to administer the insulin, and to Jetzabel's horror, it was the wrong one. According to hospital records, the nurse used the incorrect needle and gave Laishla 70 units of insulin instead of 7 units, causing her to overdose.

“I was very concerned because this isn’t the first time this nurse has taken care of my daughter," said Jetzabel.

El Paso Independent School District released the following statement:

“The District is taking the allegation very seriously. EPISD police and administration are investigating the matter."

"The only thing I want is for them to do something. For them to realize that I am a mother, upset beyond words, because she is my only daughter, and I could have lost her in an instant because of a mistake the nurse made. I think all nurses should know how to properly care for a patient," said Jetzabel.

She plans on suing the district. Her daughter spent two days in the hospital and is now recovering at home.

Comments News Comments

What should be even more shocking is that instead of recognizing and easily TESTING for severe hypoglycemia, this silly incompetent nurse actually called the parent to come down when seconds count! If a severe reaction is occuring, give simple sugars and/or activate EMS. It's not rocket science. I'm lucky that I work with some of the best nurses in the field at my job (I am not a nurse, my background is microbiology and immunology). But 90% of them cannot grasp, let alone manage, T1DM.

Yes being a school nurse is demanding, but under no circumstance are we as nurses to ever ever stray from the Standard of Care and to not check to make sure the right dose is given is, I am sorry, inexcusable. Do we all make mistakes absolutely, but to not notice you are giving 70 units vs 7 units----inexcusable. I am so thankful for the education and support my district gives me as a nurse to be equipped and ready to handle any situation.

I have been a nurse 20 years. And mother of child with diabetes 9 years. This nurse needs to lose her liscence. Did she miss that day in school where they talked about not mixing insulin syringes with regular syringes? This poor child almost died. Its really not that hard to give insulin! Good grief

You would think that COMMON SENSE would prevail. If you are that angry, you need to find a new profession if it is that unbearable for you. Not everyone is capable of handling the demands of a nurse and you sound beyond burned out, which is not good for anyone. Not good for you, the people you work with, and most of all the kids that rely on you to do your job properly. I am SO thankful for the awesome school nurses at our school and their ability to handle their job in a professional manner

Want to know why there's always openings for school nurses? We have G-tube feedings, urinary cath's, other diabetics, kids with seizures. And in elementary you have to see every "boo-boo" under the sun cause teachers are afraid of all the parent complaints, even when it doesn't warrant a nurse visit. Not counting teachers who think school nurses are their doctors. And in the age of "freebies" and "I want it now" can't wait, we are overworked. Don't judge until you've been a school nurse yourself

I am diabetic and i know the feeling that little girl went tru. I belive the state should remove that nurse's license. That is a huge mistake that could take this little girls life.

No, at minimum remedial education, at most a reprimand. I bet you are one of the ones that wants obamacare and "free" healthcare, ie. votes democrat. You will find out the hard way healthcare is never "free". Why do you think nurses were demonstrating outside Providence Hospital for decent nurse-patient ratios. An overburdened nurse (which ELEMENTARY school nurses are) is a nurse liable to make a mistake. Heaven forbid you ask someone to please wait while you attend to the diabetic. Been there.

How do you have the nerve to talk the way you do being a 'nurse' who is trained and dedicated to saving lives, taking care of ppl. You don't seem to even take your job seriously & should be ripped of YOUR nursing license. I'm a mother of 2 TID boys and it is a NON-Stop job. Insulin is not a CURE, its their LIFE SUPPORT! Im truly appauled by you and fortunate that my children are in good care at school & the school nurse keeps contact with me daily on their sugar levels, on & off duty!

i am a medical assistant, the difference between 70 and 7 units is huge. diabetes is very serious and there is no reason and i mean NO reason under the sun overworked or not that that mistake should have been made. That nurse took a job, when you do you accept the responsibility that comes with it. It is your job to tell the teachers to bug off when they want you to take care of them too it is your job to make sure that each child you care for is given your full attention. I don't care how busy.

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