Hospital staff searches 15 tons of hospital waste to find patient's necklace

July 3, 2017

A patient at St. Luke's Hospital in Phillipsburg, Pa., was reunited with a lost necklace after hospital staff helped search 15 tons of hospital waste to find it, according to an article on the Lehigh Valley Live website.

The staff, aided by a Phillipsburg police officer, the facility's trash hauler and Covanta Energy Corp workers, picked through the garbage by hand.

The patient had been taken unconscious to St. Luke's due to a medical condition. She never takes the necklace off, but hospital staff did — along with a black T-shirt they cut off of her. The necklace went into a cup, a lid went onto the cup and the cup with the T-shirt ended up in the trash.

That should have never happened, St. Luke's University Health Network said in a statement: "St. Luke's is pleased that the patient retrieved her necklace with the assistance of the hospital's staff and others. We have processes in place to ensure the safekeeping of our patients' belongings. In this case, we regret that during the patient's visit we inadvertently misplaced her necklace. We are reviewing our processes and will learn from this experience to ensure something like this does not happen again."

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