This is the second in a series of posts highlighting the ramifications of medical mistakes and negligence. The first post examined a tragic medical negligence case involving a 4-year-old girl who died of cardiac arrest at a Virginia hospital. The spotlight needs to be placed on these types of medical malpractice incidences since there was such a vilification of trial lawyers who routinely represent these victims and/or their loved ones in court. All of the talk about so-called "tort reform" revolved around limiting the amount of money a victim could obtain from a lawsuit, but very little attention was paid to what these victims endured from doctor mistakes.
This post will focus on Blake Fought of Blacksburg, Virginia (VA). He was hospitalized with an illness and given liquids and nutrition through an IV line placed through his neck. When he had recovered from his illness and was ready to head home, the hospital sent a nurse to remove the IV line.
Shockingly, the hospital sent a nurse who had zero experience or training in removing such a line. She failed to follow proper procedure and Mr. Fought suffered the consequences. He began to gasp for air, but for some odd reason, the nurses failed to respond. In fact, they began telling Mr. Fought to calm down.
The failed procedure led to a bubble of air entering Blake's blood vessels and wound up in his heartAs a result, Mr. Fought asphyxiated and died, in front of his parents who had shown up to take their son home.
The evidence is pretty clear that a serious medical mistake occurred and the hospital should be held accountable. An innocent young man was taken from this Earth due to a preventable medical mistake. All that was necessary was the nurse to say, "Hey, I don't really know what I'm doing. Let me get someone with more experience removing an IV line." Sadly, that didn't happen. But even after the medical mistake occurred, there was time to right the wrong. Sadly, that didn't happen. The nurses ignored the signs and no doctor arrived in time to correct the error. Now, Mr. Fought is gone forever.
When you understand what happened, how could anyone reasonably argue Mr. Fought's family doesn't deserve compensation for their pain and suffering? How could anyone reasonably say there should be a cap on the compensation to a family for the loss of a child? This is why medical malpractice trial lawyers are needed in our legal system. They represent families who have been stricken with grief due to the loss of a loved one, but fully understand a wrong was committed and want to take legal action. Trial lawyers are not the problem. The real problem is nearly 100,000 people dying needlessly every year due to preventable medical errors. These numbers can, and should, go down. That's the real reform needed for medical malpractice.