Operating Room Mismanagement Results in Roseville Child’s Birth Injury, Part 4 of 11

(Please note: the names and locations of all parties have been changed to protect the confidentiality of the proceedings.)

On arrival at Regional Medical Center, the systolic pressure on Ms. Cruz was 138. Her blood sugar was relatively low. Nursing personnel were aware of a history of pregnancy-induced hypertension (PIH) but it had not been treated earlier by anyone. A fetal monitor was placed at 9:00 am. L&D nursing wrote that variability is non-reassuring and referred to the contraction pattern as very irritable.” The fetal heart baseline was holding just at 120 beats per minute (bpm). By 9:10 am, Ms. Cruz was placed on oxygen by mask and changes in position were made in order to better oxygenate the fetus. In anticipation of Cesarean delivery, nursing personnel had Ms. Cruz sign a consent for Cesarean section at 9:10 am. At 9:15 am, nursing personnel called Dr. U. and reported their concerns. Dr. U. ordered an emergency Cesarean section (per L&D nurses) and a STAT Cesarean section (per his own notes) over the telephone and indicated he was en-route. He asked for a PIH panel (blood test) and requested that the patient be placed on magnesium sulfate to avoid seizing. L&D charge nurse, Gabrielle E., RN, testified that she spoke with personnel in the main OR at 9:15 am and gave them a heads-up for an anticipated Cesarean section, but never mentioned the name of the patient. At the time, the hospital had two OR teams available on-call. One was already attending to the hysterectomy which began during the 8 o’clock hour. The other would need to be called in not by the OR, but by the relief house supervisor, Olivia F., RN.

L&D nursing personnel never documented when Dr. U. arrived at bedside. Dr. U. wrote a progress note, timed at 9:20 am, in which he indicated that he had reviewed the tracing. He testified in deposition that he expected that Ms. Cruz would be delivered within 30 minutes; his orders relative to the urgency of the situation had not changed.

Between 9:15 and 9:30 am, house supervisor nurse Olivia F. received a call from Dr. U. that he was in need of an OR crew without (again) mentioning the name of the patient. The crew was intended for Ms. Cruz. He knew that Dr. V. was next door to the hospital to assist him with the surgery. L& D charge nurse Gabrielle E. also knew that Ms. Cruz needed an emergency Cesarean section. (See Part 5 of 11.)

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

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