Three Russian doctors fall from hospital windows, raising questions amid coronavirus pandemic

Three medical workers in Russia have mysteriously fallen out hospital windows in the last two weeks. CNN's Matthew Chance tells us more.

Posted: May 5, 2020 6:44 AM


Three frontline health care workers have mysteriously fallen out of hospital windows in Russia over the past two weeks, heightening public attention to the working conditions for doctors and medical professionals amid the coronavirus pandemic.

Two of those health care workers are dead, and one remains hospitalized.

All three incidents, which are being investigated by Russian law enforcement authorities, have prompted intense discussion in the Russian press and on social media.

Alexander Shulepov, an ambulance doctor in Voronezh, a city about 320 miles south of Moscow, is in serious condition after falling from a hospital window on Saturday. Local state television, citing regional health officials, said he fell out of second-floor window of the Novousmanskaya hospital, where he worked and was receiving treatment after testing positive for coronavirus.

Shulepov was hospitalized for coronavirus on April 22, the same day he and his colleague Alexander Kosyakin posted a video online saying that Shulepov had been forced to continue working after testing positive for coronavirus.

Kosyakin had previously criticized hospital administration for protective gear shortages on his social media and was questioned by the police for allegedly spreading fake news.

Kosyakin confirmed these details to CNN in an interview.

"[Shulepov] is an intensive care unit, as far as I know in a serious condition, last time I spoke to him was on the 30th of April, we checked in with each other," Kosyakin told CNN. "He felt fine, he was getting ready to get discharged from the hospital ... and all of a sudden this happened, it's not clear why and what for, so many questions that I don't even have the answer to."

Police have not responded to CNN's request for comment.

The Novousmanskaya hospital said in a statement that Shulepov had been taken off a shift as soon as he informed the hospital administration about his positive diagnosis and was offered hospitalization in the infectious diseases ward.

Three days later, Shulepov retracted his previous statements, saying that in his video with Kosyakin he was "overwhelmed by emotions." The second video Shulepov recorded featured Igor Potanin, the head doctor of the Novousmanskaya hospital, who said his medical staff has enough protective equipment.

"I spoke about this to the department's employees: I won't let anyone go to outpatients or inpatients if we don't have enough means of protection, I told them I'd go myself there, but I will not send anyone," Potanin said.

Shulepov was the third health worker in Russia to fall out of a window in the past two weeks.

On May 1, Elena Nepomnyashchaya, the acting head doctor of a hospital in the Siberian city of Krasnoyarsk, died after spending a week in intensive care, the regional department of the Health Ministry said in a statement.

Local TV station TVK Krasnoyarsk reported at the time that Nepomnyashchaya allegedly fell out of a window during a meeting with regional health officials, during which they discussed turning the clinic into a coronavirus facility.

Nepomnyashchaya was reported to have opposed those changes due to the lack of protective gear in the hospital. The Health Ministry's regional health department denied the allegations in a statement, adding that the hospital is in "reserve" for coronavirus patients and its staff has been trained and equipped. The hospital did not respond to CNN's requests for comment.

On April 24, Natalya Lebedeva, head of the emergency medical service at Star City, the main training base for Russia's cosmonauts, died in a hospital after a fall.

The hospital within the Federal Biomedical Agency, which says it treated her for suspected coronavirus, released a statement that "a tragic accident" occurred, without elaborating. The hospital did not respond to CNN's request for comment.

In the statement, the hospital said, "She was a true professional in her field, saving human lives every day!"

Oregon Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 155597

Reported Deaths: 2208
CountyCasesDeaths
Multnomah31877528
Washington21211212
Marion18468285
Clackamas13380175
Lane10258126
Jackson8395112
Umatilla765982
Deschutes595259
Yamhill378364
Linn359056
Malheur335158
Polk306442
Klamath279155
Douglas247454
Benton234416
Josephine234050
Jefferson195828
Coos149119
Union128419
Columbia126521
Wasco122126
Lincoln113220
Hood River106929
Morrow104914
Clatsop7756
Crook77518
Baker6567
Curry4296
Tillamook4142
Lake3766
Harney2736
Grant2231
Wallowa1424
Gilliam531
Sherman530
Wheeler221
Unassigned00

California Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 3566914

Reported Deaths: 52158
CountyCasesDeaths
Los Angeles119192321435
Riverside2894503767
San Bernardino2866072874
Orange2612203917
San Diego2600913284
Santa Clara1106211777
Kern102627827
Fresno953931443
Sacramento932811472
Alameda806681242
Ventura77623844
San Joaquin665691101
Contra Costa62248681
Stanislaus56132946
Tulare47784758
Monterey42138328
San Mateo38998515
San Francisco34260412
Santa Barbara31805411
Solano30024164
Merced28915397
Sonoma28141298
Imperial26903591
Kings21955218
Placer19763232
San Luis Obispo19612227
Madera15467209
Santa Cruz14588183
Marin13136197
Yolo12834185
Shasta10985174
Butte10962160
El Dorado9095100
Napa903869
Sutter884597
San Benito576759
Yuba573337
Lassen560119
Tehama508152
Nevada396074
Tuolumne394659
Mendocino379643
Amador346341
Humboldt318033
Lake315641
Glenn222523
Colusa212813
Calaveras190547
Siskiyou174014
Inyo128737
Mono12114
Del Norte9875
Plumas6536
Modoc4524
Mariposa3957
Trinity3675
Sierra990
Alpine810
Unassigned00
Medford
Clear
47° wxIcon
Hi: 63° Lo: 30°
Feels Like: 47°
Brookings
Clear
43° wxIcon
Hi: 57° Lo: 37°
Feels Like: 43°
Medford
Clear
47° wxIcon
Hi: 39° Lo: 18°
Feels Like: 47°
Medford
Partly Cloudy
47° wxIcon
Hi: 65° Lo: 30°
Feels Like: 47°
Klamath Falls
Clear
30° wxIcon
Hi: 50° Lo: 23°
Feels Like: 25°
Very mild start to March
KDRV Radar
KDRV Fire Danger
KDRV Weather Cam

Community Events