The jury in a medical malpractice trial, recently awarded $12 million for a hospital’s delay in evaluating and transferring an air rifle victim.
According to the Pasadena Star News, twenty-two-year old, Jessica Ramirez, was shot with an air rifle and the pellet entered her brain. Nevertheless, she remained conscious after the shooting and was able to ask for help. She was immediately taken to the hospital, which in turn sent her to another facility for surgery to remove the pellet. However, staff waited 5 hours before transferring her. At trial, the neurosurgeon who removed the pellet testified that, had he been allowed to operate sooner, her outcome would have better. Instead, her injury progressed into a traumatic brain injury that has left her in a persistent vegetative state.
More than $10.6 million of the award was for Jessica’s future medical care.
In many cases, especially those involving brain injuries, prompt evaluation and treatment is necessary to prevent treatable injuries from resulting in permanent damage or death. When doctors, hospitals, and other medical professionals fail to respond in a timely manner, they place their patient’s lives at risk. When this risk results in harm, they can be found liable for medical malpractice.
Click the following link for the full account of this traumatic brain injury verdict.