Articles Posted in Wrongful Death

Medical malpractices of different kinds may occur due to varying reasons. There are numerous people who are involved in this issue and you have to be pretty careful about it whenever such a problem occurs in your life.

The medical complication that arises due to the physician’s negligence may include birth injury, newborn Asphyxia, surgical errors, childbirth fractures, anesthesia errors, infections, invasive process, medication error, cerebral palsy, and so on. All the mistakes and other misconduct on the part of Sacramento hospital staff add pain and suffering to your life. This is the most disturbing situation and you want an immediate recovery which, unfortunately, is difficult in the above mentioned cases. California also has a $250,000 cap on how much you can claim for pain and suffering.

Medical malpractice is the most difficult situation for even a doctor to handle. Sometimes, the situation is so severe that the patient dies during the process. This is the height of irresponsible behavior and you have to sue against the doctor or the hospital staff so that to get financial benefits for your family after the death of your loved one (wrongful death). This is the matter of great concern for the members of your family.

Defective cars, poor eyesight, bad weather, and a driver’s negligence are some of the most common reasons why car accidents take place. The police records associated with car accidents go up each year. The government tries its best to inform automobile drivers of safety precautions.

Moreover, they are installing signboards on roads. The government also issues grants to reconstruct broken roads. They are even stricter about the use of air bags in cars to avoid accidents. Despite these measures, scores of car accidents take place each day.

What are the other causes of car accidents? Most accidents happen due to the defective automobiles. Besides defective vehicles, many deaths take place due to the negligence of drivers as well. While driving, you might think about the people walking on the streets. You might drive carefully in order to avoid car accidents. Check on the car parts prior to leaving so as to determine malfunctions. Always follow road signs. If, for example, a road sign says you should turn right, you should never turn left.

The following blog is provided as an example of a Kaiser medical malpractice lawsuit to aid potential clients in how a lawsuit is examined and conduced. It is worth noting that situations similar to those described in this medical malpractice case could just as easily occur at any of the healthcare facilities in the area, such as UC Davis Medical Center, Mercy, Methodist, or Sutter.

(Please also note: the names and locations of all parties have been changed to protect the confidentiality of the participants in this personal injury lawsuit and its proceedings.)

Plaintiffs’ experts testified that it was a violation of the standard of care for Dr. Devlin to continue to increase decedent’s opioid medications when she could not attend pain management. The dramatic increase on November 10, 2009 was not only too much and too fast, the prescription was written in a confusing and ambiguous manner, contrary to the Black Box Label Warning. Dr. Devlin prescribed the slow release Oxycodone/Oxycontin as follows: “80 mg SR 1 tab. Twice daily as needed for pain.” The standard of care and the Black Box Warning require that it never be prescribed on an as needed basis and that it be prescribed in precise 12-hour intervals to achieve the continuous release purpose of the medication. When it is prescribed twice a day as needed for pain, the patient can be compliant and take two doses in less than 12 hours and the phenomenon of “stacking” occurs, whereby the patient has too much in her system at a given time.

For more information you are welcome to contact Sacramento personal injury lawyer, Moseley Collins.

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The following blog is provided as an example of a Kaiser medical malpractice lawsuit to aid potential clients in how a lawsuit is examined and conduced. It is worth noting that situations similar to those described in this medical malpractice case could just as easily occur at any of the healthcare facilities in the area, such as UC Davis Medical Center, Mercy, Methodist, or Sutter.

(Please also note: the names and locations of all parties have been changed to protect the confidentiality of the participants in this personal injury lawsuit and its proceedings.)

FACTS/CONTENTIONS

According to Plaintiff: Plaintiffs Lyle Gaff, Arthur Gaff, Darlene Gaff, and Avery Gaff alleged that decedent Irene Bent, a 34-year-old wife and mother of three teenage children, ages 18, 17, and 15, died as a result of Oxycodone and opioid toxicity. Decedent was a long-time Kaiser member. In 2003, she injured her back at work and had continued complaints of chronic low back pain thereafter. She was treated only at Kaiser. In 2008, defendant Martha Devlin, M.D. became her primary physician. Defendant Devlin prescribed numerous opioid medications for decedent’s back pain over the course of the next one and a half years. There were only minor subjective findings of back pathology (MRI showed small disc protrusion and tenderness on exam).

On several occasions, Dr. Devlin appropriately referred decedent to the Kaiser Pain Management Clinic. However, initially, since decedent was a full-time college student and mother, she could not attend. Later, because the clinic was far from her home, she could not attend. Instead of attempting to taper decedent from the high doses of opioids, Dr. Devlin continued to increase the dosage. At times, decedent e-mailed Dr. Devlin, asking if there was anything other than all the pills that could help her. As of November 10, 2009, decedent was taking Oxycodone/Oxycontin in 30 mg slow release, 2 tablets, twice daily (120 mg daily) for controlled continuous pain relief and Hydrocodone-Acetaminophen, 10 mg, 1 tablet every 4 hours (60 mg daily) for breakthrough pain. Both are opioids with a known risk for respiratory suppression and heart rate slowing.

For more information you are welcome to contact Sacramento personal injury lawyer, Moseley Collins.

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The following blog entry is written to illustrate an example of an injury case. Reviewing this kind of lawsuit should help potential plaintiffs and clients better understand how parties in personal injury cases present such issues to the court.

(Please also note: the names and locations of all parties have been changed to protect the confidentiality of the participants in this big rig accident lawsuit and its proceedings.)

CLAIMED INJURIES

According to Defendant: Death.

CLAIMED DAMAGES

According to Defendant: Plaintiffs did not claim any economic damages. Plaintiffs’ attorney argued for approximately $1.7 million for loss of comfort, society, companionship, etc.

SETTLEMENT DISCUSSIONS

According to Defendant: Plaintiffs demanded $1 million from all defendants. Defendants offered, pursuant to CCP § 998, a waiver of costs in exchange for a dismissal.

COMMENTS

According to Defendant: Judge granted a nonsuit to all defendants on the “Elder Abuse” cause of action after plaintiffs rested. However, he did allow plaintiffs to amend their complaint to conform to proof to allege “medical battery” against Dr. Haim only. However, he also ruled that he would not allow an allegation of entitlement to punitive damages. The patient’s grandson, son of plaintiff Sasha Jimerson, was his caregiver. He was being paid by “In Home Social Services” for the care and often would leave decedent for days on “paydays.” There had been multiple visits to the home by Adult Protective Services (“APS”), but no charges were brought. Dr. Reason became aware (after the patient’s admission to ABC) of the investigation and was interviewed by detectives before the patient died. The patient’s entire family, including Sasha Jimerson, was implicated. After the patient died, APS declared the death a coroner’s case and advised Dr. Reason not to sign a death certificate or otherwise indicate a cause of death in the hospital chart. After autopsy, the coroner declared the death a “homicide” and opined that, although the patient died from complications of hip surgery, that would not have occurred had he not been abused by his caregiver.

For more information you are welcome to contact Sacramento personal injury lawyer, Moseley Collins.

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The following blog entry is written to illustrate an example of an injury case. Reviewing this kind of lawsuit should help potential plaintiffs and clients better understand how parties in personal injury cases present such issues to the court.

(Please also note: the names and locations of all parties have been changed to protect the confidentiality of the participants in this big rig accident lawsuit and its proceedings.)

Defendant Haim adamantly denied he ever promised the patient he would walk again. Instead, he documented that the surgery was for relief of pain, which was likely going to continue without repair of the hip. On the afternoon of February 17, 2007, he noted the hematologist had ordered the patient to have nothing by mouth after midnight and that his blood should be typed and cross-matched for two units of blood for typical replacement after surgery. He interpreted these orders as “clearance” for the surgery. He hoped to improve the patient’s quality of life by eliminating pain during movement. He operates very frequently on Sundays on elective cases.

The nurse obtaining the written consent, who was training at the time, said she would have been physically accompanied by her charge nurse when she obtained the patient’s written consent, and neither would have obtained it if they had any doubt of the patient’s competency. The family is noted to be in the patient’s room that afternoon, and she would have documented any objection to the surgery.

Both doctors denied the patient was bleeding to death. There was no significant surgical wound bleeding noted, and his anemia was corrected by transfusions. Other areas, such as the GI-tract, were evaluated for bleeding, and nothing significant was found.

With regard to negligence, defendants’ expert testified that Dr. Reason complied with the standard of care in all respects. The “possible dementia” was in the differential diagnosis at admission but was transient and likely due to dehydration, infection, and hypoxia. With regard to causation, he testified that the patient died of complications of multi-organ failure but not due to bleeding. Instead, his kidneys began failing (prior to surgery) after a consultant ordered a CT of the neck with contrast to rule out an airway obstruction.

For more information you are welcome to contact Sacramento personal injury lawyer, Moseley Collins.

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The following blog entry is written to illustrate an example of an injury case. Reviewing this kind of lawsuit should help potential plaintiffs and clients better understand how parties in personal injury cases present such issues to the court.

(Please also note: the names and locations of all parties have been changed to protect the confidentiality of the participants in this big rig accident lawsuit and its proceedings.)

Plaintiffs Sasha Jimerson and Sam Watson Jr. alleged that the patient clearly was demented and could not legally consent to the surgery. The surgery was unnecessary in an 89 year old with multiple medical problems and exposed him to a high risk of complication. The consent obtained on February 17, 2007 was invalid because of dementia. All of the defendants should have made the diagnosis of dementia or should have had a neurologist consult on the patient prior to surgery.

Plaintiffs also alleged that the patient was never “cleared” for surgery by Dr. Reason and, therefore, Dr. Haim acted prematurely. After surgery, the patient essentially bled to death, most likely from undocumented and persistent bleeding from the surgical incision, and defendants failed to control the bleeding, which led to underperfusion of the patient’s vital organs, ultimately causing his death.

Plaintiffs’ expert had no criticism of the surgery itself. Instead, he believed the consent was invalid due to the patient’s mental condition. He was critical of Dr. Haim for not correcting the post-operative hemorrhaging.

Plaintiffs’ expert criticized everyone for obtaining consent from a person clearly incompetent to give consent. The daughter’s concerns were well taken, and, at a minimum, Dr. Reason and Dr. Haim should have consulted with hospital administration and a neurologist for assistance. Although he acknowledged that Dr. Reason did not clear the patient for surgery, which he commended, he did criticize his “quarterbacking” of the post-operative care with regard to the bleeding, which he should have diagnosed and corrected. Finally, he criticized Dr. Reason for “covering up” for Dr. Haim in his dictated death summary, as it says that there was an intensive discussion with the family before the surgery went forward, which clearly was not true.

For more information you are welcome to contact Sacramento personal injury lawyer, Moseley Collins.

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The following blog entry is written to illustrate an example of an injury case. Reviewing this kind of lawsuit should help potential plaintiffs and clients better understand how parties in personal injury cases present such issues to the court.

(Please also note: the names and locations of all parties have been changed to protect the confidentiality of the participants in this big rig accident lawsuit and its proceedings.)

From admission to Saturday, February 17, 2007, the patient’s conditions were stabilized. That morning, Dr. Reason postponed the surgery for that day because the patient had a high white blood cell count and asked the hematologist following the patient to decide whether this finding should further postpone the surgery. Dr. Haim testified that later that day, although no consultant specifically wrote “cleared for surgery,” the orders and notes of the hematologist and cardiologist clearly indicated to him that the patient could have the surgery the following morning, Sunday, February 18, 2007.

A nurse presented the written consent to the patient late in the afternoon of February 17 and testified that if she had had any suspicion that the patient was mentally incompetent or otherwise did not know what he was signing, she would have consulted with her charge nurse and most likely Dr. Haim. However, since that did not happen, she presumed she had no such suspicion. Dr. Reason was not aware of the plan for surgery in the morning.

The surgery went forward on Sunday morning, February 18, 2007, and no intra-operative complications arose. The patient’s blood loss of about 500 cc was “normal” for such a surgery. Over the next few days, the patient did reasonably well. However, on February 22, 2007, he developed low blood pressure and a high heart rate and was transferred to the ICU. His blood studies showed a significant anemia, suggesting blood loss from somewhere.

For more information you are welcome to contact Sacramento personal injury lawyer, Moseley Collins.

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The following blog entry is written to illustrate an example of a personal injury case. Reviewing this kind of lawsuit should help potential plaintiffs and clients better understand how parties in personal injury cases present such issues to the court.

(Please also note: the names and locations of all parties have been changed to protect the confidentiality of the participants in this personal injury lawsuit and its proceedings.)

It was suspected that, during this time, members of the party were trying to destroy the evidence of drinking and other illicit activity, waiting for Amos’s alcohol level to subside, and were developing their “story” to tell the police. While they waited to call police, Mark remained trapped in the back seat of the car submerged in the icy water at the bottom of the river.

Ultimately, hours later, Amos’ blood alcohol level was tested and estimated to have been above the legal limit at the time of the accident. He also tested positive for marijuana. The investigation determined that Amos drove into the river after missing a turn on a dirt road. Amos had a previous citation of reckless driving with alcohol on his record.

CLAIMED INJURIES

According to Plaintiff: Death.

CLAIMED DAMAGES

According to Plaintiff: Not reported.

SETTLEMENT DISCUSSIONS

According to Plaintiff: Not reported.

COMMENTS

According to Plaintiff: This case is unique in that the insurance company quickly settled the case against the adult who was trusted with the care of the teenager for policy limits.

For more information you are welcome to contact Sacramento personal injury lawyer, Moseley Collins.

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The following blog entry is written to illustrate how a car accident lawsuit might follow. Reviewing this kind of case should help potential plaintiffs and clients better understand how parties in personal injury cases present such issues to the court.

(Please also note: the names and locations of all parties have been changed to protect the confidentiality of the participants in this car accident lawsuit and its proceedings.)

Facts:

The plaintiff, a 36 year-old program Manager in the computer industry, was the father of a 7-year-old boy who died in a car accident on Aug. 11, 2006. The child’s mother, who was driving, was also killed, as was his older sister, age 9.

The plaintiff sued the mother’s estate and her widower. Against the mother’s estate, the plaintiff claimed wrongful death, and against the husband, he claimed negligent entrustment.

The plaintiff had primary custody of the child at the time of his death.

The accident occurred when the mother lost control of the Mercury Mountaineer she was driving east on IHS Highway 80 near Sacramento, CA. She and her husband, who was asleep in the passenger seat, were both wearing seatbelts. The children were in the back seat watching a DVD and were apparently not belted. The vehicle rolled over a number of times, and the children were ejected.

The plaintiff claimed that the mother was negligent in her failure to require the children to wear seatbelts.

The husband testified that when he went to sleep, the children were wearing their seatbelts and watching a DVD. According to both the surviving husband’s testimony and the plaintiff’s testimony, the mother had no history of driving irresponsibly.

For more information you are welcome to contact Sacramento personal injury lawyer, Moseley Collins.

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