St. Joes launches review after patient shot by police
St. Joseph's Hospital has launched a review into the care given to Steve Mesic — a patient who was shot and killed by Hamilton police two months ago.
Mesic died on June 7 after a confrontation with police. After checking himself out of a voluntary mental health care program at St. Joes, Mesic was seen wandering in traffic on the Linc by Upper Wentworth Street ramps.
After telling him to get off the road, two officers confronted Mesic in a grassy embankment next to his home. According to the provincial Special Investigations Unit, he was shot several times. The official investigation is still ongoing.
Victoria Raab, director of public affairs for the hospital, told CBC Hamilton that a quality of care review is not uncommon in instances like these.
"It's something we do whenever there is an unexpected outcome in patient care," she said. It could be a few months before the review is finished, she added. "It depends," she said. "Every situation is very specific."
Quality of care reviews can be made available to the public, Raab says, but it depends on the wishes of the family. "It's hard to say at this point what will happen," she said. "First and foremost, out intention is to give the results to the family."
St Joseph's takes any findings that are important in the case and may implement changes to its programs based upon what they find, she says. "But not every review results in recommendations or actions."
Mesic's fiancée Sharon Dorr and her family have been critical of police response in the wake of his death. But they aren't necessarily pointing any fingers at the hospital, says Norm Dorr, Sharon's dad.
"We're not out to get a hospital unless we find out they're at fault," he told CBC Hamilton.
Both of the Hamilton police officers under investigation in the incident fired their weapons at the scene where Mesic died, according to the SIU.
SIU spokesperson Monica Hudon told CBC Hamilton that two "subject officers" are being investigated in the case. "A subject officer is defined as the police officer whose conduct may have caused the serious injury or death under investigation," she said. "
Dorr says the family is very anxious to get answers — but none have been coming from police, the SIU or city officials. "There are only three witnesses," he said. "One of them is dead, and two of them are cops."
Dorr says the family won't stop until someone can explain how and why Mesic died. "Everyone wants this to go away," he said.
"But we're not ever going away."