Posted On: April 9, 2012 by Moseley Collins

Father Dies After Nurses Fail To Monitor in Hospital in San Francisco Medical Malpractice Lawsuit, Part 2 of 2

The following blog entry is written to illustrate an example of a medical malpractice case. Reviewing this kind of lawsuit should help potential plaintiffs and clients better understand how parties in personal injury cases present such issues to the court. It is worth noting that situations similar to those described in this medical malpractice case could just as easily occur at any of the healthcare facilities in the area, such as Kaiser Permanente, UCSF Medical Center, San Francisco General, California Pacific Medical Center, or St. Francis Memorial Hospital.

(Please also note: the names and locations of all parties have been changed to protect the confidentiality of the participants in this personal injury case and its proceedings.)

Plaintiffs' counsel contended that during the 13 minutes following the intubation and during the prolonged CPR process, Vasquez experienced a severe anoxic insult to his brain and never regained consciousness.

The plaintiffs contended that the original intubation was placed esophageally, not tracheally, and that the hospital's claim that Vasquez was saturating in the 90s and then suddenly became bradycardic was untrue, and physiologically impossible. Counsel noted that there were no oxygen saturation (SpO2) values recorded in the chart. The lawyer contended that the hospital's failure to monitor Vasquez following intubation allowed his oxygen saturations to progressively drop to the point where he could no longer sustain cardiac function and went into cardiac and respiratory arrest.

The lawyer further contended that following the cardiac and respiratory arrest, the hospital failed to attempt to re-intubate Vasquez and instead tried to ventilate him via bag valve mask ventilation. Counsel asserted that, had respondents appropriately monitored Vasquez following intubation, it would have become evident that he was not properly intubated long before he went into respiratory and cardiac arrest, and that the delay in re-intubating Vasquez further contributed to his anoxic brain injury.
The hospital responded that the ER doctors' post-intubation examination confirmed tracheal placement of the endotracheal tube. Although the medical record did not contain any recordation of oxygen saturation following the intubation, the defense insisted that Vasquez's oxygen saturations were in excess of 90 and remained so following intubation.

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

His surviving sons -- Landon, Brian and Mark Vasquez -- sought recovery for the loss of their father's care, comfort, society and funeral expenses.

One son claimed that he was receiving minimal financial support from his father before his death.

SUMMARY:
RESULT: Arbitration
Award Total: $250,000
The case went to arbitration and the arbitrator found for the plaintiffs. He awarded $250,000, which breaks down a $230,000 for noneconomic damages, the maximum allowable under MICRA, $5,000 for future economic damages and funeral expenses of $15,000.

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