On April 13, 2018, a Pennsylvania judge signed off on a $6.5 million medical malpractice settlement involving the death on an 11-month-old child whose serious intestinal condition went undiagnosed and untreated by a Pennsylvania hospital until it was too late to save his life. The toddler’s parents alleged in their Pennsylvania medical malpractice wrongful death lawsuit that was filed in 2016 that their child would not have died on September 2, 2015 due to sepsis if a timely and proper diagnosis of his medical condition was made, and his condition promptly and appropriately treated by the hospital.
The parents’ Pennsylvania medical malpractice wrongful death lawsuit alleged that they brought their son to the defendant hospital on September 1, 2015 because he had diarrhea for two days, was vomiting for three days, and he was unable to keep fluids down. After spending several hours in the emergency room, the hospital discharged the little boy home with a diagnosis of “vomiting,” with instructions to follow up with the child’s pediatrician if his vomiting continued. A nurse documented that the boy’s mother was “VERY upset that her son (was) being sent home without any real answers as to what is wrong” and that the mother was upset that the hospital physicians refused to perform further medical testing because “it was just a virus,” according to the parents’ lawsuit.
The parents’ medical malpractice lawsuit alleged, “[The child’s] injuries, suffering and death were preventable had the defendants ordered and/or performed an abdominal ultrasound in a timely manner.”
Later the same day, the parents brought their young son to another hospital to be treated for his continuing symptoms. The parents alleged that it took nearly a day, during which their son continued to have abdominal pain, for the hospital to arrange for an ambulance to transport their child to another hospital for a higher level of care. The parents alleged in their medical malpractice complaint that the child should have been transported by Life Flight instead of land-based ambulance due to the severity of their child’s condition.
The parents alleged that their son was lethargic and cool to the touch with his lips turning blue when the ambulance began its journey without its emergency lights or siren activated. Upon arrival at the new hospital, the toddler was agitated, had a racing heart beat, and was grunting, according to the Pennsylvania medical malpractice wrongful death lawsuit. The parents alleged that their son became unresponsive as he was being placed in a hospital bed. Despite efforts to resuscitate him, the little boy was pronounced dead just before midnight on September 2, 2015. An autopsy confirmed that the child died from a common intestinal emergency for children that resulted in bowel infarction and septic shock.
If you or a family member may have been injured as a result of hospital malpractice in Pennsylvania or in another U.S. state, you should promptly consult with a Pennsylvania medical malpractice lawyer, or a medical malpractice lawyer in your state, who may investigate your medical medical malpractice claim for you and represent you or your loved one in a medical malpractice case, if appropriate.
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