Nurse Won't Give CPR, Elderly Woman Dies

911 dispatcher in Bakersfield, Calif., pleads for help
By Neal Colgrass,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 3, 2013 3:19 PM CST
This isn't the woman who made the call, but it looks similar.   (Shutterstock)

(Newser) – A nurse at a senior living facility north of Los Angeles refused to administer CPR to an 87-year-old woman who was hardly breathing—and who later died, the LA Times reports. "It’s a human being," pleaded Bakersfield fire dispatcher Tracey Halvorson on a 911 tape recorded this week. "Is there anybody that’s willing to help this lady and not let her die?" The nurse paused and said, "Um, not at this time."

The nurse explained that Glenwood Gardens policy was not for staff to administer CPR. Halverson urged the nurse to hand the phone to "a passerby" to help the elderly woman, so the nurse turned to someone else: "She’s yelling at me and saying we have to have one of our residents perform CPR," the nurse said of the dispatcher. "I’m feeling stressed, and I’m not going to do that, make that call." The facility's senior administer later said the nurse had acted in accordance with policy by calling 911. Hear the tape at (Read more nurse stories.)

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