A Dallas anesthesiologist with a lengthy arrest record is reportedly linked to Baylor Scott & White Surgicare North Dallas, which closed its doors this week after allegedly drug-contaminated IV bags were given to patients.
Dr. Raynaldo Ortiz Jr., who is not board-certified, was subject to at least two distinct Texas Medical Board disciplinary actions, both of which included the assessment of fines.
The most recent instance for which Dr. Ortiz received a reprimand and a fine was concluded on August 19, 2022. Documentation of the incident states that in November 2020, Ortiz was performing anesthesia for a patient who then required CPR and emergency transport for intensive care.
The Texas Medical Board determined that Ortiz had “failed to meet the standard of care for one patient during a procedure in which [he] performed anesthesia.”
The board claimed Ortiz “did not recognize the patient’s inadequate oxygenation and ventilation,” alleging that he “did not respond to the patient’s issues in an appropriate manner.”
Following the incident, he also allegedly failed to properly document its occurrence.
Ortiz received a resultant adverse recommendation from the Medical Executive Committee (MEC) at North Garland Surgery Center (NGSC) and was handed an “administrative penalty in the amount of $3,000.”
The physician then relinquished his medical staff membership and all clinical privileges at NGSC.
This was not the first disciplinary action Ortiz received from the Texas Medical Board. Previous to this patient-related incident, Ortiz was disciplined in connection with one of a series of arrests that were listed in a hearing before the board, all of which were related to alleged domestic abuse dating back to more than 27 years ago.
Around June 11, 1995, Ortiz was arrested for Assault Causing Bodily Injury to a Spouse, a Class A Misdemeanor. He and the alleged victim later divorced and settled for an undisclosed sum.
Approximately 10 years later, around September 19, 2005, a second female partner filed for an emergency protective order against Ortiz, alleging that he had assaulted her.
Ortiz was later arrested on December 30, 2014, on charges of Assault Involving Domestic Violence against a third alleged victim, another Class C Misdemeanor.
The following month, in January 2015, the third alleged victim also filed for an emergency protective order and later settled with Ortiz for an undisclosed sum.
Around June 15, 2016, a Collin County jury found Ortiz guilty of Cruelty to Non-Livestock Animals, a Class A Misdemeanor, and a crime of “moral turpitude.”
Documents from the Texas Medical Board state that Ortiz had shot his female neighbor’s pet dog with a pellet gun in retaliation for helping the third alleged victim of domestic violence escape him and testifying against him at the protective order hearing.
Ortiz was fined $4,000 and sentenced to 25 days in the Collin County Jail, which was remanded to two years of community service.
As a result of the conviction, Ortiz was prohibited from engaging in harassing or threatening behavior, owning or carrying weapons, and using drugs or drinking alcohol.
He was also required to submit to random drug testing and ordered to participate in an Anger Management Program, as well as pay the associated court costs and $505 in restitution for veterinary bills.
On July 13, 2016, the Medical Executive Committee at Baylor Scott & White Medical Center Garland administratively suspended Ortiz’s clinical privileges for two weeks after he failed to notify the hospital of his misdemeanor criminal charges and subsequent conviction.
Despite attempts to appeal the verdict in 2018, his conviction and sentence were upheld by a court of appeals.
Amid the most recent disciplinary action against the physician from the surgery center, an investigation appears to be underway regarding the potentially tainted IV bags.
Baylor Scott & White’s Surgicare center reportedly invited police to investigate after at least one patient was injured or killed, possibly due to a contaminated IV bag.
Currently, the death of a doctor at the hospital, Melanie Kaspar, is under investigation in connection with the IV bags.
Dr. Kaspar, who had been treated as a patient at the surgery center, died after being discharged to her home, with reports initially presuming her cause of death to be a heart attack. However, her cause of death was later determined to be the toxic effects of the drug bupivacaine.
She had used an IV to administer fluids to herself because she was feeling dehydrated, according to NBC Dallas.
The FBI told The Dallas Express that the Dallas Police Department and U.S. Attorney’s Office are investigating the matter.
This story is developing and The Dallas Express will continue to report on it as further information becomes available. Updated coverage will be added below.
September 9: Ortiz’s medical license has been suspended.
September 14: Ortiz has been arrested in connection with the investigation into the tainted IV bags.
September 15: Ortiz has been charged for allegedly tainting IV bags.
September 16: Ortiz has made his first court appearance.
For more Dallas crime-related news, see how Councilmember Gay Donnell Willis’ District 13 saw a 23.1% increase in year-over-year Crime Score for August.