In horrifying news of the day, the former lead radiological technician of a hospital in the small Georgia community of Perry (about 100 miles south of Atlanta) was caught falsifying mammograms for more than 18 months. Rachel Rapraeger has officially pleaded guilty to 10 misdemeanor charges of reckless endangerment, as well as one felony charge of computer forgery.
Rapraeger told police that she had personal issues that made her stop caring about her job, and that in an effort to catch up on reports she had fallen behind on, she went into the hospital's computer system, assumed the identity of physicians, and gave patients—about 1,300 of them—clear readings on their scans. Only thing is, at least 10 patients actually had breast cancer.
Rapraeger's actions were discovered in 2010 after a patient who'd received a negative mammogram report was told by another doctor at another hospital that she actually did have cancer.
Sharon Holmes was one such patient. After receiving the all-clear from her doctor, she suddenly discovered a lump in her left breast. A new mammogram with a different doctor revealed that in fact she had an aggressive stage 2 cancer.
The diagnosis was bad enough, but the deception was the worst part, Holmes told the Associated Press. "I'm thinking I'm doing what I'm supposed to do, getting my tests done, and then I find out someone else isn't doing their job," she said.
Scary stuff! What do you think of this news? Let us know in the comments below or tweet @Shape_Magazine!