Unethical patient care. Families separated needlessly from loved ones. A rejection of treatment that could be life-saving. Frontline nurses speak out today about what they’ve witnessed first-hand in the health care system during this time of COVID.
Global Frontline Nurses Erin, Olga, and Nicole discuss the medical malpractice and corruption that motivated them to raise their voices and risk professional ridicule and public criticism. They each became a whistleblower, concerned about ethics violations that included: scuttling of patients’ rights, families’ rights, and proper medical care.
They discuss today the problem of financial incentives that are diametrically opposed to proper patient care, the rejection of treatments for COVID like the IMS ivermectin protocol, and more. What they share points to some serious cover-ups related to the truth about COVID in hospitals and care facilities. And the nurses’ bravery, speaking out against unethical treatment, is a call to all of us, whatever our profession, to use best practices and ethics and to ask important questions, even in the face of opposition and at great personal risk.
For more from these nurses, visit globalfrontlinenurses.com.
Listen to the episode here:
Within the below transcript the bolded text is Hilda
Ethics are important in any profession or situation but they are especially critical when lives are on the line. This is Episode 305. Our guests are nurses who dared to ask questions about what they perceived as violations of ethics, the scuttling of patient’s rights, family’s rights, and proper medical care. Global Frontline Nurses, Erin, Olga and Nicole, speak with us about what motivated them to raise their voices, risk professional ridicule and public criticism. They each went out on a limb for their own reasons, became whistleblowers within their profession. Now, they are allies in this movement. The stories that nurses share include red flags about unethical patient care, the problem of financial incentives that are diametrically opposed to that care, the rejection of treatments for COVID like the eye mask ivermectin protocol, and more.
What these nurses share is nothing short of scandalous. They suggest that there are some serious cover-ups happening pretending to the truth about COVID in hospitals and care facilities. The nurse’s bravery speaking out against unethical treatment is a call to all of us, whatever our profession, to use best practices, ethics, and to ask important questions even in the face of opposition and at great personal risk. I want to take a moment to acknowledge that each of these nurses is obviously sharing their own experience. We understand that many hospitals and medical professionals are ethical and dedicated to helping the sick and injured. We thank and appreciate them for their efforts. Nonetheless, these stories need to be heard. We do pray that they are the exception rather than the rule.
Welcome to the show, Erin.
Thank you so much for having us.
This group of frontline nurses is here at this health rally. I remember you in particular, Erin, because I saw your video. You apparently recorded things in secret to expose what was happening in a hospital. Can you tell a little bit of that story?
I am originally from Florida. I’m a registered nurse. I was working in the emergency room in Tampa. Most of us were furloughed. It was not busy. I got a travel assignment to New York City during the height of the pandemic. This was early April of 2020. When I first got there, I sat around for three days. I’m a veteran. I’ve been to war. I know what it’s like being on the front line. You usually get to work right away. We did it. We sat around. There were nurses that were there sitting around for weeks. This is $10,000 a week we’re getting paid.
Those were my first red flag. Why are we sitting around if this is an actual pandemic? We’re not going to work. Long story short, I ended up getting a job assigned to Elmhurst Hospital, which was the epicenter. It took me one shift to realize the gross negligence and essentially murder that was happening. Nobody cared about these patients. Nobody was going into these patient’s rooms. They had IV tubings outside of the patient’s doors. There were some patients that I walked into the rooms. They had feces up the backs dried for weeks.
I think of hospital staff and medical professionals looking out for their patients. This is alarming, Erin.
I couldn’t stand by and say nothing. I tried to go talk to the doctors and the higher-ups. Everybody discredited it. It is what it is. They accepted it. I could not accept that. I contacted a New York City attorney and I said, “What can we do?” What we did is I ended up getting a pair of spy glasses, some wires, and I recorded it. I have video and audio recordings. This is the only way to truly expose the corruption with the proof. That’s what I did.
Why was there corruption? What was behind letting the patients lapse into neglect?
The hospital is doing an emergency situation such as this. They claim it was an emergency. I beg to differ their liability-free environments also with financial incentive. There was a $13,000 financial incentive to admit COVID patients. Another $39,000 incentive to put these patients on a ventilator. Some of the nursing homes, there’s $10,000 per COVID death. Mind you, the governor in New York, Andrew Cuomo banned the use of alternative treatments such as hydroxychloroquine and the zinc protocol, which was successfully treating every single one of my patients in Florida but they would not give this medication there. The irony with this is the hospital is liability-free. Everyone is liability-free in there. It was a free for all. It was a perfect storm. Except if a doctor prescribed the hydroxychloroquine, then they would be considered liable. They could lose their license. Think about how insane that is.
Naysayers say, “Erin, you were a novice. You didn’t understand what was going on.” You’re experienced. Is there any truth to what the naysayers have to say about you?
There are always going to be naysayers. The thing is I have video proof. It is disputable. Naysayers are out there. We understand that. It doesn’t fit what they want to believe but it is what it is. This is what happened. As the time goes on, a lot of us nurses were here and we’re gaining momentum because it’s shifting. The truth is coming out. I feel quite vindicated now that it is getting exposed. The naysayers are going to be naysayers but at the end of the day, they weren’t there. I was.
What gave you the courage to speak up?
I don’t know. I’ve always been born for this. I was in the military. I served our country. I went to war. I was in Iraq for over a year. At the end of the day, I care about people. I went into nursing to help people. If I see what’s going on that they’re murdering these people and their families have no clue because they’re kicked out of the hospitals, that’s my job as a nurse. I am a patient advocate. I’m a mandatory reporter. I’m a human and I care about other human beings. Imagine what our world would be like if everybody cared like that. It would be so much better.
Thank you for speaking up. I have one more question for you. What do you recommend that the average person do now that they’ve heard you all speak up? What can we do to advocate for patient’s rights and to uncover the corruption?
We created an organization, GlobalFrontlineNurses.com. We’re going to have a backdoor for nurses that want to get involved but don’t necessarily want to be in the spotlight. They want to report unethical things going on or they want to help us out. We also have a way for other people to get involved and see how they could help. This is a global organization. There are going to be Canadian frontline nurses. We have interest in Sweden and Australia. This is the beginning. This is how we’re going to change it because nurses run the healthcare system. When we unethical nurses are on the frontline doing the right thing, imagine what we can do.
I’m glad that you started that organization. Thank you so much for your time. Olga, you have a story to tell about a loved one. Can you tell the story of what happened with your mother?
My mother was a victim of COVID-19. It’s what I want to call it. She was the victim of medical malpractice. As a result of that, she passed away unfortunately. She was on a ventilator immediately when she started to have complications of COVID. I deeply feel that there could have been other interventions that they could have done. She was on a ventilator for five weeks. I would say the last few weeks of her, I asked for hospital staff to treat her with medications, antibiotics and steroids. They did not.
Why not? You’re a nurse, her daughter, and you’re asking for a certain treatment. Why wouldn’t they give it to her?
Originally, towards the last two weeks when she was on the ventilator, the physician confirmed that he would not prescribe any antibiotics, steroids and medications to help her live because her diagnoses were COVID-related pneumonia and COVID-related lung injury. If it would have been just pneumonia or any other respiratory conditions such as COPD, emphysema or pulmonary fibrosis, things like that, they would have treated her for that but because it was COVID-related, there is no indication or treatment.
Tell us the story of when you tried to talk to her.
I received the call from one of the physicians telling me that she had hours to live. I had the opportunity to go see her. They had said it was for an hour. When I went into the hospital, I asked her, “Mom, are you ready to go to heaven and be with God? Jesus is an angel.” She said no. She wasn’t ready to go. This time the physicians had said that she wanted them to pull the plug that she didn’t want to talk to me through video camera, which I couldn’t understand. I’m like, “Why would my mom not want to talk to me?” She’s completely isolated without family, without friends, without pastors and things like that.
My mom was religious. There was something I couldn’t understand. When she confirmed that that was a lie, I said, “Mom, you don’t want to talk to me?” She nodded her head and she’s like, “No.” I’m like, “Do you want to talk to me?” She’s like, “Yes.” I said, “We’re going to continue fighting that. Promise me you’re going to fight.” She shook her head and she’s like, “Yes.” I said, “I’m going to continue praying and fighting for you.” Unfortunately, once the nurses heard that because they’re all standing by the door on the other side but listening to the conversation, they said my twenty minutes were up. The chaplain wasn’t there. They told me they would have a chaplain. I said, “I was told it was an hour. Why twenty minutes?” It was a difficult time for me. The fact that they told me I was contaminated and they wheeled me out of the hospital in a wheelchair with security. It was all a shock. I still struggle a lot with the experience that I went through.
I can hear it in your voice and any of us can empathize. You were trying to advocate for your mom. It sounds like the hospital staff, instead of cooperating with what you wanted and she wanted, they were going against what your wishes were.
Something was going on in there obviously. When you have a physician and if you ask them and say, “Can you try this? Can you try giving her that?” Usually, they want to try to prescribe something to keep that patient alive to help them survive, at least they tried everything in their possibility that they could to keep a patient alive. When you ask the physician, “Do you want my mom to live?” There’s no answer. You once again ask. She didn’t answer. “Do you want my mom to live?” They hang up the phone on you. That’s when you know you’re on your own.
Your story is a testament to the fact that we all need to step up, ask more questions and get involved. If we have any relatives or friends who have come down with COVID-19, we need to make sure to advocate so they can get the best treatment and care possible.
You want to ask what medications they’re taking. Ask them and say, “If there are any changes to her medications or his medications, please let me know.” You know what medications they are. Many times, I didn’t even get report from nurses or doctors. If you questioned nurses, they got so upset at me. When I asked them, “What medications does she have?” “They’re on the same. Nothing is changed. Everything is the same.” I found out things were not the same and her medications were discontinued shortly after.
Olga, thank you for telling your story. Thank you for advocating for all the patients and the people who are vulnerable to not getting the proper treatment and not having people pulling for them to live.
You’re welcome. Thank you so much for everything.
Nicole, you had a video that went viral. You were upset because it had to do with the fact that your patient wasn’t being given what he needed to be given to survive. Can you tell that story?
I had a patient whose COVID had completely resolved. He was COVID negative. He had antibodies. His labs were good. All he needed to do was be weaned off the ventilator and extubated so we can discharge him back home. All of a sudden, they come up with me and they’re like, “We want you to hang this experimental drug. We’re going to see if it fights COVID.” I’m like, “He has no COVID. It’s resolved. He has antibodies. He’s tested negative. We need to get him off the vent. We need to get him home.” They’re like, “The doctor ordered it.” I said, “I don’t care if Jesus ordered it. I’m not giving it. He doesn’t need it.” That’s when they threatened to send me back to the hotel.
Who threatened to send you back to the hotel?
The nursing administration because we normally have either what’s called a house sup or assistant director of nursing that is on the night shift. I held the line and I’m like, “I’m not doing it.” They backed down. The next day, they took the patient away from me. They sent me to a different unit, a non-COVID unit that had 7 nurses to 4 patients. They made me give my ventilated patients to other nurses so they each had three ventilated patients. As I’m getting off the elevator to the new unit, a nurse gets on. I’m like, “Where are you going?” She’s like, “I’m going to this unit.” I’m like, “I just left that unit.” She’s like, “They said that they suddenly need help.” I’m like, “Why did they take me off that unit?” I got upset. I knew it was a system. If you didn’t do what you were told, they would shuffle you around and find somebody else who would do it.
Had this ever been your experience in a hospital before?
No. I’ve worked with experimental drugs for my cancer patients. There’s always an experimental drug coordinator. There’s always a patient advocate. You can call 24/7 if you have questions. I was always able to get ahold of a doctor and ask what’s going on. They would sit down and talk with me extensively about the medications. There was always an ethics committee involved with these experimental drugs. It was the Twilight zone. I don’t understand. That’s not how we do experimental drugs like what they were doing in New York.
What happened next, Nicole?
After that, the video started to get shared because it was a Facebook Live video. I was doing back home because I’m so mad. This is ridiculous but not in those words. They were much worst words that I used in that video. The video started to go viral and it’s been seen all over the world. It’s been translated into multiple languages. In the meantime, I’m getting death threats. People were like, “You need to get out of New York before something happens.” I’ve got people looking for me and then I go home. Completely, all the nurses turned against me. I couldn’t find employment. It was devastating to see that everyone who saw what I saw turned their backs on me.
You were a whistleblower.
I didn’t know that term until about a week afterwards. I’m a whistleblower.
They don’t want you getting any exposure because they don’t want to lend credence to your story. Do you think this kind of thing is happening at more than one facility?
Yes. I’ve worked with different COVID units in different states and it’s happening with more frequency than you would think. It’s becoming the norm and not the exception. I thought New York was the exception but you go to Texas and you go to some of these other states, they’re doing the same thing.
Why are they doing it?
That is a million-dollar question. If you have the answer, please fill me in because there is no reason to be doing what we’re doing with these experimental drugs when we have drugs on the market that have been scientifically proven to help patients with their COVID and resolve it. Even on the ventilator like the IMS protocol using ivermectin. I work with a nurse advocate named Lori Jean from United States for Medical Freedom. She came across the IMS protocol for ivermectin. She’s been pushing it with some of her patients that she’s been advocating for because people get ahold of her and they’re like, “We need help.” It’s from all over the country, different states. She tries to get the doctors to prescribe for it. They say it’s not proven. It’s not for COVID but they’ll offer the family any experimental drug that comes up to them. I’m like, “We’ve had ivermectin for decades. You’ll feel more comfortable giving them a medication that you made in the last 30, 60 days than a drug that’s been on the market for decades?” Nothing makes sense about any of this. We need to start asking questions.
I’m just an everyday Joe. I’m not a nurse. I’m not a doctor. What can I do to help uncover what’s happening on some of this corruption and mistreatment of patients?
You should follow GlobalFrontlineNurses.com and follow us on our social media pages. We have hundreds of nurses that aren’t even here but they’re in our rinks telling us their stories. We’re getting those out as safely as we can so that those nurses don’t get retaliated against. They can keep their jobs and their nursing licenses. Also, you can follow Lori Jean on United States for Medical Freedom who every Sunday do a radio show. We talk about the cases that we advocated. We’re dealing with a case in Missouri where they said you can’t be a full code. You’re going to be a DNR.
In the process of Lori Jean being on the phone arguing with the family that they can’t do that, the man dies. They’re like, “He died twenty minutes ago.” She’s like, “What are you talking about? We’ve been on the phone for twenty minutes.” She’s like, “Yes but he’s dead, so we don’t have to have this conversation anymore.” She hung up on her. That’s what’s going on. Ask yourself why we can’t get family into these hospitals to see their loved ones when we can send people into outer space.
Can’t they find a way? Why do you think they’re keeping the family members away?
Honestly, it’s lack of ambition to even get the family in there because why deal with the family if you can go under the guise of COVID? “It’s COVID. It’s not safe. We can’t let you in.” They don’t realize that a whole of the health care workers go home at the end of the day to their loved ones. They go to the gym and grocery store. We’re into this for a while and we don’t have effective PPE to get the family in there to see their loved one? They’re choosing not to look loved one in there to see their family member. They’re choosing it at this point. There’s no excuse anymore.
Thank you for your boldness. Thank you for sharing these stories. The more people that are aware, the more we can make a difference and turn things around.
Thank you so much for having us. I appreciate that. Visit GlobalFrontlineNurses.com. You can see our bios. You can follow us on all our social media. Thanks, guys.
About Nurse Erin Olszewski
Nurse Erin has spent her life fighting for the freedom of everyday Americans. As a young woman, she joined the U.S. Army to fight overseas in Operation Iraqi Freedom. Returning home, she turned her focus, drive, and dedication to defending our most deeply-held values on American soil. Erin has spent years fighting for medical freedom.
In 2020, Erin volunteered for the frontlines yet again as a traveling nurse assigned to New York’s Elmhurst hospital during the COVID-19 pandemic. What she found there horrified her and inspired a new focus on her advocacy. Erin’s newly published book, The Undercover Epicenter Nurse, reveals how gross negligence, insurance fraud, medical malpractice, and good old-fashioned greed are killing everyday Americans at Elmhurst and beyond.
Her new fight is a fight or a return to ethics, transparency, and respect for the truth–values sorely needed in the medical field today. In order to fight this battle, Erin has united other frontline nurses speaking out from all over the world. Join her and support her!
About Nurse Nicole Sirotek
Nurse Nicole has been a registered nurse in the State of Nevada for nearly ten years. Her background is in critical care and flight nursing.
She has several bachelor’s and master’s degrees and was previously educated in Biochemistry prior to becoming a nurse. Her research participation included tracking and monitoring genetic mutations in the HIV virus, and genetic expression in bacterial and artificial yeast chromosomes.
Through research and nursing, she has participated in patient care or outbreak mitigation with illnesses ranging from hemorrhagic fevers to contaminated water sources. She continues her education in nursing, working to complete her Doctorate of Nurse Practitioner where she hopes to provide safe, equitable care to the underserved population in her community.