Usually when you tell a doctor you want a second opinion, they support that choice. But one couple's baby was forcibly taken away from them after they sought a second opinion on their son's treatment! It sounds outrageous, but wait until you hear all the details. There's actually a justifiable reason why the police banged on their door and took their baby away -- but that doesn't mean it was the right thing for Child Protective Services to do.
Anna and Alex Nikolayev's 5-month-old baby Sammy was being treated in the ICU of Sutter Memorial Hospital in Sacramento for a heart murmur and flu symptoms. According to Anna, the staff made a few mistakes along the lines of administering antibiotics their baby didn't need (yikes!). So when the doctors started talking heart surgery, the Nikolayevs were understandably like, WTF?!? But no one would listen to them! So they did what many other parents would do.
Since the doctors disagreed with Anna and Alex over getting a second opinion, and wouldn't discharge Sammy, they just took him out without a formal discharge. They went directly to another hospital, Kaiser Permanente. Meanwhile, Sutter called the police, who met the Nikolayevs at Kaiser. They decided Sammy was fine and getting the treatment he needed. Kaiser examined Sammy and decided he could go home. "I do not have concern for the safety of the child at home with his parents," the doctor's report said. The report was given to the police, who agreed to let the couple take their baby home.
So that's that, right? NOPE. The next day, police and CPS were on their doorstep, demanding to be let in. They took Sammy away and brought him back to Sutter. Anna and Alex were allowed to visit with their son for an hour the following day.
What do you think? Sounds pretty screwed up to me. I mean, obviously the parents should have gotten a proper discharge first. But since they're new to the U.S., they may not have realized what they were doing could get them into so much trouble. And honestly, how hard is it for CPS and the police to realize that these parents were just trying to get their baby the BEST CARE THEY COULD -- which is exactly what we want all parents to do!
Why does it seem like the wrong kids get taken away while kids who are in serious danger never get removed in time?
Anyway, there was a hearing yesterday, and the judge ordered the baby to be treated at Stanford Medical Center, and told the parents they have to follow doctors' orders now. And when Sammy is discharged, a social worker has to make regular visits to make sure everything is okay. Whatever! Everyone is just doing their job, but it's sad to see what happens when common sense gets thrown out the window. The person hurt the most from all of this is Sammy.
Do you think the Nikolayevs should have suffered this much grief for removing their son from the hospital without a formal discharge?
Image via KSDK.com