During the trial of Dr. Conrad Murray, the doctor who had been responsible for taking care of Michael Jackson when he died over a year ago, it was revealed that he made 17 violations in the administration of propofol, according to an expert on the anaesthetic.
Expert Highlights Murray’s Errors
Anaesthetist and expert on the drug, Dr. Steven Shafer, testified that the drug should never have been used to treat insomnia and the negligence portrayed by Dr. Murray was responsible for the death. He called the doctor “clueless”. Dr. Murray denies involuntary manslaughter.
Dr. Shafer helped to create the guidance on each bottle of propofol, and his experience is clear. He is also a professor at Columbia University. He called the delay in calling 911 “inexcusable”, especially for someone of the medical profession, and told the court that propofol should absolutely never be used as a sleeping aid.
“We are in pharmacological never-never land here, something that was done to Michael Jackson and no one else in history to my knowledge,” he said. Dr. Shafer also said that Dr. Murray should never have said yes to the pop star’s demands for propofol, knowing it was not medically safe. In addition, the lack of record keeping was an issue, and a denial of Jackson’s rights.
Attention To Patient
Finally, the expert said that a doctor should never multi-task while caring for a sedated patient, as they will look the same regardless of their state. He said, “A patient who is about to die does not look all that different from a patient who is OK.”
The anaesthetist said that the most egregious violation and one that could have prevented the death of the star was the problem of safeguards. None of the safeguards had been put into place for performing sedation, something the Doctor called an “egregious violation”. He said that a stoppage of breath was expected if sedatives were used and that the doctor should have monitored his patient. Adding an oral or nasal airway for oxygen, and ensuring the tongue did not block the throat could have saved the singer’s life.
Dr. Shafer is anticipated to be the final witness for the prosecution and will continue to speak in court today. The trial continues.