The Cebu City Prosecutor’s Office has recommended the filing of criminal charges against two doctors over the death of Birili Mayor Mayor Marlon Garcia.
In a 34-page resolution, the city prosecutor found reasonable ground to indict doctors Elfleda Hernandez and Yvonne Betina Montejo, for reckless imprudence resulting in homicide.
Hernandez is an infectious diseases specialist while Montejo is a pulmonologist, who both attended to Garcia when the latter was confined at the Chong Hua Hospital in Cebu City in September last year.
The former mayor succumbed to septic shock secondary to a catheter-related bloodstream infection, ventilator-associated pneumonia.
The resolution was penned by Assistant City Prosecutor Verna Merelos and was approved by City Prosecutor Liceria Lofranco-Rabillas.
Chong Hua Hospital in its official statement on 10 May 2021 said the facility had already anticipated the outcome of the investigation.
“The Cebu City Prosecutor’s recent finding in the case of the late Mayor Marlon Garcia is not unexpected in these extraordinary times.
“The indictment is not a finding of guilt but only a confirmation of the opportunity given by the legal process for the attending physicians to prove the quality care they have given to their patient,” the statement said.
“Our doctors still have faith in our justice system, and they will continue to explore all legal remedies to prove their innocence. We continue to respect the Garcia Family’s quest for answers and maintain our compassion for the deceased public servant and the bereaved family members without diminishing our support, concern, and care for our doctors,” the statement added.
Merelos in her resolution said, “The undersigned also finds that the respondents’ defenses of denial adherence to the best standard of care of the patient and the limitations set by the family on the treatment of Mr. Garcia are all evidentiary in nature and should be ventilated in a full-blown trial.”
Marlon was brought to the hospital on 5 August 5 after he complained of shortness of breath. He was confined in Chong Hua Hospital until his death on 6 September 2020. He was tested positive for coronavirus disease 2019(COVID-19) but had recovered.
His wife Jima Tiano Garcia in an affidavit said Marlon had no pre-existing condition, except for gout and not even under any maintenance medication.
She was even confused that she was informed on August 31 that Marlon had to undergo dialysis.
Both doctors have denied accusations against them by the Garcia family.