A nurse who contracted Ebola after treating a patient with the disease is suing her hospital. She claims the hospital failed to provide adequate training and protective gear, among several other charges. The nurse says she still suffers physically and mentally from the experience. She alleges that the hospital used her for public relations efforts against her will.
The Kafkaesque story told in the lawsuit filed by nurse Nina Pham features a woman who innocently shows up for work one day and finds herself trapped in a nightmare, betrayed by those she trusted to protect her.
One of the more shocking allegations in the lawsuit nurse Nina Pham filed recently against Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital Dallas involves what she says was a deceitful attempt to help bolster the hospital’s public image during a frenzy of media coverage about Ebola.
Patient passports are gaining in popularity, but risk managers should consider legal and documentation issues. The patient passport is a document that covers basic patient data. A key question is whether the passport becomes part of the medical record.
Misplaced nasogastric and percutaneous endoscopic gastrostomy tubes pose a serious threat to patient safety and a liability risk for hospitals. New technology might improve the detection of misplaced tubes.
A Palm Beach County, FL, jury recently returned an $8.5 million malpractice verdict against MDVIP, the nation’s largest concierge medicine practice company, which has 784 affiliated physicians in 41 states. The award is the first against MDVIP, and it is believed to be the first malpractice award against any concierge management firm.
Plaintiffs’ 3-month-old daughter was taken to the hospital with a high fever and elevated pulse rate. The ED physician diagnosed an ear infection and discharged the infant with a prescription for antibiotics. Days later she was diagnosed with pneumococcal meningitis, hypoxic brain injury, and hydrocephalus. She lived for 20 more months. Plaintiffs sued the hospital and the ED physician, and they won a verdict of joint and several liability for $1.7 million.
A 54-year-old woman suffered from chronic and severe back pain, and she underwent an elective epidural steroid injection. While sedated, the patient’s airway became blocked, which resulted in oxygen deprivation for as long as 10 minutes. Multiple electronic monitors indicated that the patient was not breathing properly, but the physician continued the procedure. Emergency assistance was not called for more than an hour, and the physician failed to report to a subsequent treating hospital that the patient was deprived of oxygen for several minutes. The patient suffered severe brain damage, and she died six years after the procedure from complications related to the brain injury. The jury awarded the widower and estate $21.9 million in damages.