The idea of a hospital stay is typically not at the top of anyone’s “to do” list. However, many Massachusetts residents end up spending at least several nights in a hospital at one time or another. While there, patients assume that they will receive proper care and that medical procedures will be completed in the proper manner. Unfortunately, as evidenced in a recent jury verdict in another state, medical mistakes can cause devastating results — including brain injury.
Over the Christmas holidays in 2013, a woman in another state was hospitalized and needed a catheter in her neck. On Christmas Eve, a hospital nurse removed the catheter in a manner that the jury found to have caused the patient to suffer a stroke leading to brain damage. The patient’s family claimed, and the jury agreed, that the catheter was removed improperly and in violation of standard procedures.
Rather than going home on Christmas Eve as originally planned, this patient remained in the hospital for several months. The stroke she suffered caused her to lose basic functions such as mobility and speech, which had to be relearned. Additionally, the patient lost significant cognitive abilities and requires ongoing care.
In this case, the jury awarded the patient and her family $3.85 million as a result of her brain injury. In addition to the patient’s altered lifestyle caused by the injury, medical bills, household modifications, ongoing care and other future costs need to be taken into consideration. When a Massachusetts family faces a similar situation, they will want to analyze the legal options available to them.
Source: magicvalley.com, “‘What’s a brain injury worth?’ Jury awards Twin Falls couple $3.85 million in St. Luke’s lawsuit“, Alex Riggins, July 13, 2016