Medical License Suspended After Patient Death at Luxe Med Spa in Wortham

24 December 2023

Texas Medical Board takes action against Michael Patrick Gallagher, medical director at Luxe Med Spa, following the death of a patient who received IV therapy at the facility.

The Texas Medical Board has temporarily suspended the medical license of Michael Patrick Gallagher, the medical director at Luxe Med Spa in Wortham. The suspension comes after the death of a patient who received intravenous (IV) therapy at the facility. The board alleges that Gallagher failed to properly supervise an unlicensed individual who administered the treatment, resulting in complications that led to the patient’s death. This incident has raised concerns about the safety of IV therapy and the importance of proper medical supervision.

Tragic Death Shocks Radio Station Staff and Community

Jenifer Cleveland, a 47-year-old Fairfield resident and employee at radio station KNES Texas 99.1, tragically passed away after receiving IV therapy at Luxe Med Spa. The news of her death sent shockwaves through the radio station, with her former boss, Buzz Russell, expressing disbelief and sadness. Russell sees the suspension of Gallagher’s medical license as a step towards closure for the grieving community.

Lack of Proper Supervision and Training

According to the Texas Medical Board, Luxe Med Spa’s owner, Amber Johnson, administered the IV therapy to Cleveland. The board alleges that Gallagher, who was responsible for supervising the procedures at the spa, failed to properly supervise Johnson, an unlicensed individual. This lack of supervision resulted in complications that the staff at Luxe Med Spa were not trained or prepared to handle, ultimately leading to Cleveland’s death. The incident highlights the importance of proper medical supervision and adequate training when administering IV therapy.

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Understanding the Risks of IV Therapy

Dr. Amy Mersiovsky, the director of the Department of Nursing at Texas A&M – Central Texas, emphasizes the need for patients to understand the contents of their IV therapy and research the medical background of the physician administering the treatment. IV therapy involves the administration of medications and fluids that should be handled by licensed professionals who understand fluid and electrolyte balance and safety. Patients should be aware of the potential complications associated with certain IV solutions, such as those containing potassium chloride.

Unanswered Questions Surrounding Cleveland’s Death

Cleveland was found unconscious at Luxe Med Spa and was immediately attended to by an EMS crew. Despite their efforts, she never regained consciousness and passed away. A preliminary autopsy report indicated that Cleveland collapsed after standing up following the treatment. The report also mentioned that Cleveland had mild cardiomegaly, which involves an enlarged heart. However, the final autopsy report listed the cause of death as “sudden cardiac death of uncertain etiology,” leaving the role of IV therapy inconclusive. Further investigation is needed to determine the exact cause of Cleveland’s death.

Lack of Protocols and Policies

The Order of Temporary Suspension issued by the Texas Medical Board states that Luxe Med Spa did not have any protocols, policies, or procedures in place for the administration of IV therapy. This lack of standardized guidelines put patients at risk and contributed to the complications that occurred in Cleveland’s case. The incident highlights the importance of implementing proper protocols and ensuring medically licensed or experienced personnel are present during IV therapy sessions to ensure patient safety.

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Conclusion: The temporary suspension of Michael Patrick Gallagher’s medical license is a significant step in addressing the tragic death of Jenifer Cleveland at Luxe Med Spa. This incident sheds light on the potential risks associated with IV therapy and the importance of proper medical supervision and training. Moving forward, it is crucial for medical facilities to establish clear protocols and policies for administering IV therapy and ensure that qualified professionals are present to safeguard patient well-being. The investigation into Cleveland’s death serves as a reminder of the need for continuous improvement in healthcare practices to prevent similar incidents in the future.

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