Man From Sacramento Dies During Surgery, Part 2 of 11

(Please note: the names and locations of all parties have been changed to protect the confidentiality of the participants in this wrongful death/elder abuse case and its proceedings.)

It is worth noting that situations similar to those described in this case could just as easily occur at any of the healthcare facilities in the area, such as Kaiser, U.C. Davis Medical Center, Mercy, or Sutter.


California Health and Safety Code section 7155.5(c) states as follows:

(c) A hospital, physician, surgeon, coroner, medical examiner, local public health officer, enucleator, technician, or other person, who acts in accordance with this chapter or with the applicable anatomical gift law of another state or a foreign country or attempts in good faith to do so is not liable for that act in a civil action or criminal proceeding.

Defendant’s demurrer with respect to this section is based on misstatement of the allegations contained in Plaintiff’s complaint and a misreading of the statute.

Defendant ODA Did Not Act In Accordance With The Provisions Of The Chapter At Issue

The chapter at issue as referenced by the statute is the Uniform Anatomical Gift Act, (California Health and Safety Code section 7150 et seq.). Plaintiff’s complaint contains several allegations and causes of action which make it explicitly clear that Defendant Organ Donor Association and its agents, employees and co-conspirators did not act in accordance with the provisions of the Uniform Anatomical Gift Act ( UAGA ).

ODA Did Not Obtain Legal Consent For Organ Donation

First, the UAGA requires an organ donor to consent to organ donation. ( See Cal. Health & Safety Code §7150.5 and 7151). Plaintiff’s complaint alleges that (a) Plaintiff never gave consent for her son to be taken off the respirator, (b) Plaintiff did not knowingly, without duress, or with full informed consent give consent for her son’s organs to be donated, and that (c) Plaintiff did not consent for her son to be injected with lethal doses of morphine and Ativan.

In its effort to skip discovery, skip trial, and go directly to dismissal of Plaintiff’s complaint without leave to amend , Defendant states that Plaintiff alleges ODA obtained plaintiff’s consent for donation of decedent’s organs. . However, in citing paragraph 31, line 5 of the complaint, ODA conveniently ignores the allegations that indicate that Plaintiff was in a slate of shock and distress when ODA called her to obtain consent, and Plaintiff’s allegation that her son Robert Lee was not an appropriate candidate for Organ Donation. .

Defendant ODA knew Robert Lee was not an appropriate candidate for organ donation, and knew that he would not die if taken off the respirator, yet failed to inform Plaintiff of those facts when they attempted to obtain her consent for organ donation. The actions of ODA in this matter go far beyond lack of good faith effort to comply with the UAGA. To the contrary, ODA knowingly misled Plaintiff in their effort to obtain consent, and did so knowing that Robert was not an appropriate candidate for organ donation. (See Part 3 of 11.)

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

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