Monday 19 March 2018

Elderly woman (92) wakes up screaming in funeral home after doctor declares her dead

The 92-year-old woman died two days later from heart disease
The 92-year-old woman died two days later from heart disease

David Kearns

A doctor has been arrested after a elderly woman woke up screaming in a funeral home after she was declared dead.

Prosecutors in Germany have charged the 54-year-old doctor with negligent bodily harm for declaring the 92-year-old woman dead.

The doctor is alleged to have pronounced the seriously-ill woman dead in March after a caregiver found her without a pulse and not breathing at a retirement home.

That evening, a worker at the funeral home where she had been taken heard a scream from the refrigeration room and discovered the woman alive.

The woman died two days later in hospital from heart disease unrelated to the incident. 

Essen prosecutor Birgit Juergens said the 53-year-old doctor, whose name has not been released, could face anything from a fine to a prison sentence if convicted.

In July 2011, in an unrelated case, a 92-year-old woman was accidentally declared dead by the United States Department of Treasury.

As a result, her living savings were completely drained.

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