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Betty & Ron Cole
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We just wanted answers

It’s a parent’s worst nightmare. Your child goes into the hospital healthy for a ‘routine’ procedure and the next thing you are being pulled into a small room and told, “We don’t expect her to make it.”

Your first thought is that you misunderstood something. Then you think, “That’s crazy, what are you talking about?” Next, you want answers! However, answers still have not come for my daughter, my husband and I.

Our daughter Alicia Cole entered Providence Saint Joseph Hospital in Burbank, CA on August 15, 2006 to have uterine fibroids removed. She was in great shape and told us the doctor said she would be home in two days. She had never had any type of surgery before so my husband and I did not want her to go through this alone.

Thank God we trusted our instincts. Our daughter did not leave the hospital for a solid two months. It was a nightmare that NO PARENT should have to experience.

I had to argue with a nurse to get her to call a doctor when I discovered a black dot on my daughter’s stomach. It turned out to be the first sign of flesh-eating bacteria.

I was asked by the doctor to assist him with cutting open and cleaning out my daughter’s incision at the bedside (I am not a nurse).

My Husband was the one to recommend that the doctor call an Infection Specialist.

We were never given direct answers to our questions like “What does she have?” The answer was always, “We don’t know” No one would tell us how many times this had happened or if there were any other patients with this same condition.

To date the hospital and doctors assumes no responsibility for the substandard care that our daughter received.

We know that doctors are human and that unexpected things can happen. But what is inexcusable is the aftermath. The callous way our daughter has been treated because her infection exposed a systemic problem in the hospital. The omission of events from her medical records, the hospital photos that no longer exist, the silence of those who know what really happened.

We are proud of our daughter Alicia for fighting back and we as a family will continue to stand united with her to fight for justice and change the system.

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At 1:45am on March 16, 2012, Doreen Mulman said…

Thank you so much for the note, Mr & Mrs Cole.

Have a lovely weekend.


At 10:59am on June 8, 2009, Daniela Nunez said…
So great to virtually meet you! Alicia is such an inspiration to us all and we owe a lot to her parents (you) for caring so much and being a source of strength.
At 2:29pm on November 6, 2008, Doreen Mulman said…
So nice to 'meet' you, Mrs. Cole! You raised a wonderful daughter, I feel honored to know her. Thanks so much for all you've done to help raise awareness. God bless you, -Doreen

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