An Italian nurse who reportedly murdered thirteen patients was arrested this week, authorities said. The nurse, who worked in an intensive care unit for over a year, is accused of administering fatal doses of a blood-thinning drug. Her victims essentially bled to death on the inside.
Reports The Associated Press, via ABC News on March 31: “According to investigators, the deaths occurred from 2014-2015 while the patients were being treated in the anesthesia and reanimation department of the state-run hospital in Piombino, a coastal city about 43 miles southwest of Florence.”
The nurse was identified as 56-year-old Fausta Bonino. The individuals she is accused of murdering were all between the ages of 61 and 88. While some of her victims had terminal illnesses, not all of them did, investigators said. For motives unknown, Bonino allegedly administered strong doses of the anti-coagulant drug Eparina (marketed as Heparin in the US) – ten times the recommended dosage.
Officials said they investigated all of the “abnormal” deaths, and the only commonality was that nurse Bonino was with them all shortly before they died. “In the horror rankings we have reached a new peak of human misery,” commented Tuscan Health Minister Beatrice Lorenzin.
Prosecutors said they will pursue homicide charges in the deaths of all 13 patients. Authorities said Bonino, who is married with two adult children, was previously treated for depression, though it’s unclear if that played into her heinous actions.
“In the horror rankings we have reached a new peak of human misery,” Lorenzin said, according to the Global Post. “Sadly, this is not the first time that serial killings have been uncovered with a killer nurse as the protagonist. Such action goes against every medical and ethical code.”
“This latest episode shows once again the necessity of careful monitoring of the oldest and most fragile people when they trust their lives to health institutions,” she added.
The Italian nurse is due in court next month to answer charges for her murdered patients.