ROME: An Italian nurse has been arrested on suspicion of killing 13 patients by administering fatal doses of a blood-thinning drug while they were in intensive care, authorities announced on Thursday.
Fausta Bonino allegedly killed the patients aged between 61 and 88 over the course of 2014 and 2015 at a hospital in the Tuscan town of Piombino, local police told a press conference.
Investigators believe that the victims, all seriously but not terminally ill, died as a result of being given strong doses of the anticoagulant drug Eparina.
Marketed as Heparin in the United States and other markets, the drug is used to prevent blood clotting.
Bonino is accused of having given her victims up to 10 times the usual dose of the drug, including in certain cases where it had not been prescribed by the physicians treating the patients.
The result, police said, was to rapidly trigger multiple and irreversible internal bleeds which killed the alleged victims.
Bonino was arrested Wednesday after a review of all the recent abnormal deaths at the hospital identified her as being the only staff member involved in every case.