(Please note: the names and locations of all parties have been changed to protect the confidentiality of the proceedings.)
Dr. Stuart X.
1) Although Dr. X. testified that he didn’t recall ever seeing Ms. Cruz in L&D on October 5, the L&D nursing notes clearly place him there at 10:32 am. The notes also clearly demonstrate that he was needed in the OR for Ms. Cruz. The notes do not indicate what Dr. X. was told regarding patient status, but assuming he was aware that the patient was in distress, he had an obligation to do whatever was reasonable to insure that the Cesarean section was done as quickly as possible. Dr. X. testified that he did nothing until being instructed by Dr. U.. Given that Dr. X. had been called for Ms. Cruz in L&D and was at her bedside under circumstances in which a CRASH Cesarean section had been called, he had an absolute responsibility to assist in getting a surgeon to operate sooner than Dr. U. became available – which did not occur at least until 10:52 am and probably later. This was particularly so if Dr. X. was the physician identified by Amanda Cruz who claimed to know about surgery ongoing in the main OR and yet refused to have the patient transferred or pursue alternative options to get Ms.Cruz delivered. According to the deposition of Dr. Z., he likely had remained in the main OR until at least 10:40 am (following surgery that ended at 10:25 am).
2) L&D nursing had documented on the fetal monitor tracing at 10:52 am, that Dr. U. had requested general anesthesia but that Dr. X. insisted on a spinal. This tracing never was transferred with the patient to the main OR.
The implication is that prior to the time that the patient was actually transferred at 10:52 am, Dr. U. asked for general anesthesia, it was refused and Dr. X. did not provide anesthesia until 11:08 am, causing a significant delay of delivery. The note on the monitor tracing is further evidence that Dr. X. had some familiarity with Ms. Cruz prior to transfer. (See Part 11 of 11.)
For more information you are welcome to contact Sacramento personal injury lawyer, Moseley Collins.