Clinic where King Died Closed-- but not ibo association (Yet)

Dana Beal dana at phantom.com
Fri Feb 3 16:28:19 EST 2006


Clinic closed after King's death
Friday, February 3, 2006; Posted: 11:48 a.m. EST (16:48 GMT)

ATLANTA, Georgia (AP) -- When Coretta Scott King checked in at the  
Santa Monica Health Institute in a Mexican beach resort last month,  
her condition was already quickly deteriorating, her physician there  
said.

"She was really bad," Dr. Rafael Cedeno told The Atlanta Journal- 
Constitution in a story published Friday. "She was going down fast."

And while doctors there were still evaluating her for possible  
treatment, the widow of slain civil rights leader Dr. Martin Luther  
King Jr. died Tuesday at the age of 78.

Meanwhile, Mexican health officials shut down the hospital Thursday,  
saying the alternative clinic in the resort of Rosarito Beach did not  
have proper authorization.

Coretta Scott King checked into the hospital on Jan. 26 under the  
name Ruth Green. She was accompanied by her daughter, Bernice.

At the time, she was already half-paralyzed from a stroke and heart  
attack and was struggling with complications from ovarian cancer  
apparently discovered last summer, her Mexican doctors said.

Staff at the 30-bed hospital did not know who their patient really  
was until her medical records arrived. Cesar Castillejos, the  
clinic's assistant director, said he never knew her real identity.

Cedeno said doctors only had time to offer medical support.

"Just support, you know," he said. "Just IVs, a little bit of protein  
by mouth and by tube to put her in a good condition to start the  
treatments."

But her health was quickly getting worse, he said.

"Her tumor was blocking her intestine," Cedeno said. "She was trying  
to eat and was throwing up. She was eating a little bit, little by  
little, but then throwing up a little."

Located 16 miles south of San Diego, the Santa Monica Health  
Institute is known for providing alternative treatments to patients  
with incurable diseases. Its Web site says it uses an eclectic  
approach to diseases that are often believed to be incurable.

But according to a news release from the office of Francisco Vera  
Gonzalez, Baja California state's health secretary, the hospital was  
conducting surgeries, X-ray procedures and internal medicine without  
the appropriate authorization. Other problems found by inspectors  
Thursday included unconventional treatments and the discovery of  
unknown substances at the hospital.

The hospital, in cooperation with Mexican immigration officials, was  
given three days to arrange for the return of all patients to their  
home countries. All 20 patients at the hospital on Thursday were  
foreigners.

But Vera Gonzalez told the Atlanta Journal-Constitution on Wednesday  
that his office had not found evidence of any malpractice in King's  
death.

In a statement, the King family announced funeral plans that include  
a viewing at the Georgia state Capitol on Saturday; another viewing  
on Monday at Ebenezer Baptist Church, Martin Luther King Jr.'s  
longtime pulpit; and a funeral in suburban Atlanta on Tuesday at the  
10,000-seat New Birth Missionary Baptist Church, where Bernice King  
is a minister.

Copyright 2006 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.This  
material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.
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