Georgia Medical Technician Pleads Guilty To Falsifying 1,300 Mammogram Reports
Rachael Rapraeger, the lead radiological technician at Perry Hospital in the small Georgia town of the same name located about 100 miles from Atlanta, has plead guilty to charges that she “had for about 18 months been signing off on mammograms and spitting out reports showing nearly 1,300 women were clear of any signs of breast cancer or abnormalities,” reports The Atlanta Journal-Constitution (AJC).
“[Sharon] Holmes and nine other women were later shown to have lumps or cancerous tumors growing inside them,” the paper continues. Rapraeger was sentenced to serve up to six months in a detention center and may serve 10 years on probation. She will also have to pay $12,500 fine. Holmes recovered from aggressive stage 2 cancer through a successful surgery, chemotherapy and radiation treatment.
Rapraeger was charged with 10 misdemeanor counts of reckless conduct and one felony change of computer forgery. Her probation commits her to not work in the health field. Rapraeger did not give an exact reason why she falsified the mammogram results except to say she had personal issues that made her indifferent to her job. She fell behind on her work and gave all patients a clear reading in order to reduce the work load. In some cases, she even pretended to be a doctor to falsify the records.
Her criminal actions came to the attention of authorities in April 2010, after a patient received an negative report from Rapraeger, but later found out she had breast cancer. The hospital staff at Perry Hospital began to investigate an discovered, for 18 months, she declared 1,3000 women clear of breast cancer or other benign abnormalities.
In a Fox News report, Rapraeger told authorities she knew her actions were not right but she did not entertain the consequences until a patient with cancer was told her mammogram was negative. Her attorney released a statement, noting his client feels remorse for her actions and the pain she has caused patients.
This is very extreme, but here’s a case where, if you’re feeling overwhelmed or simply don’t like your job, it’s in the best interests of everyone involved if you just resign or take a leave of absence.