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UNC Children’s Hospital Under Investigation After New York Times Report

photo of a newborn in the hospital

UNC Children’s Hospital is under investigation after a New York Times report revealed high death rates among pediatric heart patients. The numbers were so worrisome that the hospital’s pediatric cardiologists were reluctant to refer patients to their own surgeons.

Investigative journalist Ellen Gabler follows the story of a child named Skylar Jones who went in for a low-risk heart surgery and died at the age of 2 after a series of post-op complications. Shortly after her death in June 2016, pediatric cardiologists from the hospital met with their division chief to express concerns about surgery outcomes. That and other internal meetings were secretly recorded, including a conversation in which an administrator warned doctors that the department's budget could be affected if they stopped referring patients internally. Gabler joins host Frank Stasio to share her reporting, including her efforts to get UNC Children’s Hospital to release risk-adjusted mortality data, which 75 percent of hospitals around the country make public. Since the article was published late last week, the state has launched aninvestigation into practices at the hospital.

Dana is an award-winning producer who began as a personality at Rock 92. Once she started creating content for morning shows, she developed a love for producing. Dana has written and produced for local and syndicated commercial radio for over a decade. WUNC is her debut into public radio and she’s excited to tell deeper, richer stories.
Longtime NPR correspondent Frank Stasio was named permanent host of The State of Things in June 2006. A native of Buffalo, Frank has been in radio since the age of 19. He began his public radio career at WOI in Ames, Iowa, where he was a magazine show anchor and the station's News Director.
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