A New Brunswick community is in shock after news broke on Saturday that a registered nurse had been fired at the Moncton Hospital after an investigation led hospital officials to believe the nurse had inappropriately administered Oxytocin to at least two mothers, forcing them to require urgent caesarean sections.
Many expectant mothers and mothers of small children say they were caught off guard by the news.
Natacha Morneault, a mother, said she was shocked to hear about the incident.
“I was really shocked. I couldn’t believe that this would happen in New Brunswick, let alone Moncton,” added Nicole Eagle, another mother, on Sunday.
Jennifer Bernier, a mother to two children, said that she was “shocked and just bewildered as to why someone would do that.”
Hospital officials have said they apologized to patients, families and staff on Saturday, adding that the alleged incidents are troubling.
Dr. Ken Gillespie, the hospital’s chief of staff, says the hospital had enough evidence to believe the registered nurse inappropriately administered Oxytocin to at least two mothers.
Oxytocin is a naturally occurring hormone that causes contractions of the uterus, speeds up labour and can help control post-delivery bleeding.
Its usage, however, requires close monitoring because it can, among other things, affect the fetal heart rate.
A statement from the hospital said the mothers who received the Oxytocin required urgent caesarean sections as a result of the drug and that hospital officials responded immediately.
“I really feel compassionate for those women that had a caesarian section that probably didn’t have to… It’s scary,” Eagle said.
Bernier, who says she required Oxytocin when she gave birth, described the impact of the drug as “intense and really painful.
“It comes on quick and strong,” she said.
WATCH: Hospital fires nurse after women given inappropriate drug to induce labour
The news left all of the mothers Global News talked to feeling concerned.
“It’s concerning because you put your trust in these people. You don’t know what’s going on, especially if you’re a first-time mom, you expect to be well taken care of, and it’s kind of scary,” said Morneault.
The hospital said it is only aware of two cases right now, adding that expectant mothers should not have any hesitation about care at its facilities and are free to reach out to the hospital with questions.
“Patients and families can call 1-844-225-0220, and we will ensure you speak to a member of our obstetrics team,” said Gillespie.
The alleged incidents are now being investigated by the RCMP, but details about the status of the investigation were not available on Sunday.
Global News has been told more information will be provided Monday.
— With files from Callum Smith