A woman who used to work at a hospital in Pennsylvania is suing the institution, claiming that nude photos were taken of her while she was about to undergo surgery, then shared to others.
Sheila Harosky filed the lawsuit against Washington Hospital, the chief executive officer and the doctor who conducted her surgery, CBS News reports. The suit alleges invasion of privacy and medical malpractice, among other things.
Harosky said, “I trusted my medical personnel. That’s what hurts so bad.”
In a statement issued by the hospital, authorities claim that the photos were an extension of a practical joke Harosky took part in when she put fake intestines on her body before the operation. Harosky admits to playing a joke on her surgeon, but she says she didn’t give permission for her photos to be taken and distributed.
According to CBS Pittsburgh, Harosky used to work for the hospital 15 years ago, encountered Dr. Dennis Brown and his medical team when she needed hernia surgery. Harosky said she did not realize that a nurse would distribute the nude photos with other people.
“She showed me four to six photos of me unconscious in the operating room being prepped for surgery,” Harosky said.
There was my private parts. There was everything, everything that you see in the operating room.
Harosky reported the matter but she felt that the hospital wanted her to keep the matter under wraps. Ken Hardin, Harosky’s lawyer, said, “To take a photograph of someone’s genitalia is just egregious.”
Harosky and Hardin assert that this violation of privacy happened to at least one other patient at the hospital, and the hospital said that it fired the nurse who took the photos and took the doctor off surgeries.
The Health Department confirms that the hospital was given a notice for violating state policy on cellphone use, which can bring bacteria and germs into a sterile operating room.