There’s no feeling that could be bad enough to describe how one Texas woman feels about an ill-treatment meted on her by a medical staff who she had trusted with her life back.
On implulse, the lady made a smart decision to record events that will transpire in her unconscious state while the surgeons operate on her as if she knew something would happen.
The incident occurred at Lyndon B. Johnson Hospital in Houston, Texas.
“I can’t even express how I feel,” Ethel Easter told ABC News today.
Easter explained that she was to have her hernia operation in August 2015. Prior to the day of operation, she had visited the surgeon a few times. Her condition had worsened and she was very sick but feared for her life when the doctor explained she would be having the surgery in two months time.
“He started abruptly yelling at me, saying, ‘Who do you think you are?'” Easter explained.
Things got really bad for her because the doctor in charge of her case got angry and handed her files over to another staff.
Easter said she wept uncontrollably when she realized she won’t be meeting the doctor anymore because as confirmed by the second surgeon, the first had left “bad notes” in her file. That was a red flag which was more likely to affect her overall consideration.
At that point, she didn’t want to cancel the surgery or reschedule it for another time.
“That’s when I decided to record it,” Easter said. “I just decided to hide [the audio-recording device] in my hair.”
After the surgery, Easter said, she played the recorder in her privacy.
She was distraught to hear that the medical personnel called her many names which includes “a handful” – whatever that means. They also accused her of having threatened to hire a lawyer and file a complaint against the hospital.
In truth, Easter said she never made such threats. Rather she admitted she might have said that she would file a complaint because of the long wait time previously scheduled by the inhumane doctor.
At a point during the surgery, Easter said that the staff joked about her belly button as well as referring to her as Precious.
One of the staff was heard in the recorder saying, “Precious, yes. This is Precious over here, saying hi to Precious over there.”
In her assumption, she believes their reference to her as Precious is from a 2009 movie character in which Precious was used.
“She was an obese African-American woman who was raped by her father. … I was distraught,” she said.
ABC News contacted Harris Health System operates Lyndon B. Johnson Hospital for response but the office said, “No Comments”.
“Harris Health System does not have the patient’s written authorization to discuss this matter, and may not do so under federal privacy laws without written permission,” the hospital said in an emailed statement to ABC News.
The hospital did release a statement to ABC News that it had sent to Easter in December 2015. In the letter, Harris Health thanked Easter for sending it a copy of the recording “to better analyze your concerns regarding that recording.”
“With regards to the recording, as I explained in my prior correspondence, we reminded the OR staff and physicians to be mindful of their comments at all times. After carefully listening to the recording that you provided, Harris Health does not believe further action is warranted at this time,” the letter said.
Harris Health also said the physicians who’d cared for Easter were employed by UT Houston.
UT Health Care system told ABC News that it could not comment due to HIPAA and patient privacy laws.
Easter said today that she is undecided whether to sue the hospital or not.
“They had no right to say those things over my body.
“It was unprofessional and it was wrong.”