Imagine operating a beauty salon with all the tools and chemicals that go with it inside a neonatal intensive care unit. That's the allegation now under investigation at the Olive View-UCLA Medical Center in Sylmar and the reason why two staff members are now on paid leave.
"It's just ridiculous. They should be caring about the patients more and the health of little kids too. Newborns, that's ridiculous," said Chad Crown, hospital visitor.
"But if my kid was there, and they're doing stuff like that yes, of course I would want them to get fired," said hospital visitor Francis Hluz. "They should know better and hopefully that this should be a lesson to be learned."
The anonymous complaints were filed with the joint commission that accredits the hospital. The reports include allegations that nurses and doctors got manicures and their eyebrows waxed with the salon tools often resting on medical devices.
"Remember these are our county's most vulnerable patients," said Tony Bell, Supervisor Antonovich spokesperson. "Many have respiratory issues and in cases they're vulnerable to infection. Having this type of operation in the same facility is unconscionable."
According to Bell, Supervisor Antonovich is pushing for a full investigation and fast action. Meantime, the Department of Health Services released a statement on Thursday.
"The Department of Health Services says it is concerned by the allegations made against Olive View-UCLA Medical Center. No NICU patients at Olive View were harmed or transferred to other hospitals as a result of these allegations. We are complying fully with the Joint Commission and will take appropriate personnel action if allegations are substantiated. "
The Department of Health officials also say they acted quickly to remove the staff members allegedly involved in the operation of that make shift salon. But they say more employees could also face disciplinary action if the investigation confirms that the allegations are true and that others are also involved.