Salem Health technician who appeared to mock patient no longer works at hospital

Salem Health has finished its investigation into an emergency department technician who posted a video that appeared to mock the sound of a patient in pain. 

The technician no longer works for Salem Health, according to spokeswoman Lisa Wood. Wood did not clarify whether the employee resigned or was terminated. 

In a video posted to Twitter in early November, the former employee looked into the camera and appeared to be annoyed as a patient could be heard groaning in pain off-screen.

The caption read “When a patient has poor coping skills,” according to a screen recording of the since-deleted tweet.

“Salem Health regrets that this activity has taken place. This one act does not reflect the compassionate care that patients receive at Salem Health every day. Our team of caregivers lives the ideal that no patient, provider or staff harm is acceptable,” Wood said in an emailed statement that was later posed to Salem Health’s Facebook page.

The video drew criticism on Twitter, and a reaction video from a popular TikTok user received over 1.2 million likes as of Nov. 30. 

Salem Health investigated the former employee for violating the hospital’s patient privacy and social media policies, Wood said earlier this month.

“It is our priority to protect this culture of excellence and healing. Every decision, including staffing decisions, is based on the fundamental priority of patient safety,” Wood said over email. “Numerous accrediting agencies and quality awards confirm what patients have come to rely on: Salem Health is a place you can count on to deliver the best care and kindness.”

The technician has an active CNA license listed by the state as of Nov. 30, set to expire January 2024. The Oregon State Board of Nursing said it could not confirm whether a complaint has been received or a case opened, because investigations are confidential.

Contact reporter Abbey McDonald: [email protected] or 503-704-0355.

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Abbey McDonald joined the Salem Reporter in 2022. She previously worked as the business reporter at The Astorian, where she covered labor issues, health care and social services. A University of Oregon grad, she has also reported for the Malheur Enterprise, The News-Review and Willamette Week.