On March 31, 2015, the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors gave its approval to the settlement of a man’s medical malpractice claims against Los Angeles County + USC Medical Center. The medical malpractice settlement includes a $4.5 million payment to the plaintiff along with waiving the plaintiff’s medical treatment costs that were about $790,000. The settlement also includes covering the payment in the approximate amount of $200,000 that the plaintiff would otherwise have had to pay to Medi-Cal as a result of his receipt of the medical malpractice settlement payment.
The Underlying Facts
The plaintiff was 27-years-old when he was involved in a serious motorcycle accident in September 2010, for which he underwent surgical repair of a ruptured aorta that involved placement of a large stent graft at a local hospital. The plaintiff apparently had a satisfactory initial recovery inasmuch as he was playing basketball on October 19, 2011, when he collapsed.
The plaintiff was taken to the Los Angeles County + USC Medical Center with complaints of extreme pain and the loss of sensation in his legs. The plaintiff was admitted to the defendant hospital through its Emergency Department. His condition deteriorated over the following two days until his physicians finally determined that a clot located in his stent had caused the blood circulation to his legs to be compromised. The plaintiff had surgery to repair the stent, but by the time the surgery was performed, he had already suffered injuries that resulted in permanent paralysis.
The plaintiff subsequently filed his California medical malpractice case against the hospital where he was treated after his motorcycle accident, the surgeon who implanted the stent-graft, and the Los Angeles County + USC Medical Center. During earlier court proceedings, the first hospital and the first surgeon were determined to be not liable to the plaintiff for his injuries and they were dismissed from the case.
The medical negligence that led to the man’s permanent injury apparently was the result of a breakdown in communications between the defendant hospital’s emergency department and its inpatient medical staff. Los Angeles County has reportedly taken steps to improve communications among medical providers as a result of the plaintiff’s medical malpractice lawsuit.
The net proceeds of the settlement payable to the plaintiff will be used to pay for his attendant care for the rest of his life, assistance with his activities of daily living, and to compensate him for his other damages. Had Los Angeles County not settled the man’s California medical malpractice lawsuit, it may have been found to be responsible for a much larger medical malpractice payment to the plaintiff had the case gone to trial.
If you or a family member suffered injuries in Los Angeles or elsewhere in California that may be due to medical negligence, you should promptly find a Los Angeles medical malpractice lawyer (a California medical malpractice lawyer) who may investigate your medical malpractice claim for you and represent you in a California medical malpractice case, if appropriate.
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