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Texas Personal Injury News

Sunday, January 7, 2018

Texas Bacterial Meningitis Death Sparks Medical Malpractice Suit

Q: Can a missed diagnosis be the basis for a medical malpractice lawsuit?

No parent should have to bury their child. While a child's death is always tragic, it is particularly devastating when it results from preventable medical malpractice. Medical malpractice results when a healthcare provider departs from the accepted medical standard of care and a serious personal injury or death results.

In a Texas medical malpractice lawsuit, a grief-stricken couple is blaming the death of their four-year-old daughter on a freestanding emergency care facility and the third-year resident medical student who treated her and sent her home--allegedly missing the life-threatening diagnosis of bacterial meningitis. Only a few hours later, the critically-ill child was reportedly found "unresponsive in her bed", went into "full cardiopulmonary arrest", and despite being rushed back to the clinic, she died.

The first responder medical malpractice suit alleges that the ER facility was improperly staffed and that the attending doctor was "a student trainee practicing at the emergency care facility without direct supervision by a qualified physician". Expert witness statements by an emergency room physician and a pediatric infectious disease specialist reportedly support plaintiffs’ position that the acceptable medical standard of care was not met and that based on the child's symptoms and lab work an "overwhelming bacterial infection" would have " been obvious (and frightening)".

Medical malpractice which results in a death is often the basis of a wrongful death lawsuit.  The theory is that had it not been for the departure from the accepted standard of medical care, the death would not have occurred.

When somebody dies as a result of injuries caused by the negligent, reckless, or intentional actions or inactions of another person or entity, the victim’s closest surviving relatives can often sue for the victim’s wrongful death. Because wrongful death actions are very complex, a skilled personal injury attorney must be consulted to determine which survivors have standing to sue and what damages they may be entitled to recover.

Once a defendant has been found liable for causing the death, compensatory damages may be awarded, depending upon the particular circumstances of each case. Examples of compensatory damages include the final medical and funeral expenses of the victim, loss of support, loss of services, loss of prospective inheritance and more. In the event the victim was a child, damages may include trauma and loss of relationship with the child.

If you or a loved one was a victim of medical malpractice and survived, or if a loved one died as a result, the personal injury and wrongful death experts at Chandler, Mathis & Zivley can help get you the compensation to which you are entitled. While we can't undo the injury or death, we can help relieve the financial burden it has caused so you can focus on healing. Contact us today for a free consultation.

From our offices in Lufkin and Houston, we've been serving Texans throughout the state as well as those visiting Texas for over 40 years.

 


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Chandler, Mathis & Zivley, PC has offices located in Houston and Lufkin Texas and serves clients throughout East Texas as well as many other states.
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