The federal government – which is you and me – is on the hook for a $9 million medical malpractice case which led to the death of a mother of five and her infant baby. It’s a rare instance of a malpractice case being tried in a federal court room.
How it Happened
The mother, 40, was seven months pregnant when she went to the emergency room at Norwegian American Hospital in Chicago because of difficulty breathing. Even after being diagnosed with pneumonia, she spent an entire day in a regular hospital room – rather than being admitted into the Intensive Care Unit (ICU).
More disturbingly – if that’s possible – is the fact that her doctor failed to order any treatment whatsoever.
As the mother repeatedly told nurses that she was “in distress,” the attending nurse tried to contact the doctor but was unsuccessful. Rather than transferring her to the emergency room, the nurse opted to do nothing.
Later that night, she was found dead. Roughly 45 minutes later, her baby boy was delivered stillborn via cesarean section.
Why it Went to Trial in the First Place
While it’s true that most medical malpractice cases are settled rather than actually going to trial, this particular case definitely defied the odds for one simple reason: the doctor, nurses and hospital were all trying to blame the other for the deaths of the mother and her baby.
Why the Feds Will Pick Up the Tab
The facility where the doctor is employed, Erie Family Health Center, is subsidized by the federal government. The $9 million award granted by the jury was agreed upon by the U.S. district judge, and will be given to the mother’s husband.
Call the Fitzgerald Law Firm if You’ve Experienced Medical Malpractice
Stories about people losing their lives are shocking for most readers. However, with the recent news that medical errors are the third-leading cause of death, we are seeing such accounts on a far too disturbing regular basis.
If you’re a victim of medical malpractice, we urge you to call us here at the Fitzgerald Law Firm at 800-323-9900 for a free consultation.