Patients and their families have faith in their medical care providers. They trust in their knowledge and expertise and expect that these providers will make sound decisions in order to protect the health and safety of their patients. However, while everyone makes mistakes, a mistake regarding someone’s medical care can often prove deadly. The question becomes, what actions should be taken against a medical care provider’s perceived negligence in North Carolina? One family sought legal recourse in the death of their loved one and received compensation as a result.
According to the lawsuit, an 89-year-old woman who had recently suffered two falls needed X-rays of her back. She was wheelchair-bound and an assessment had determined she was at risk for suffering another fall. Despite this, workers at the orthopedic center requested that the woman stand while she underwent the X-ray.
As she was standing unsupported, she fell and hit her head on the floor. Six days later, she passed away at an area hospital. The family of the woman sued, asking for $2 million. They were ultimately awarded $650,000 after mediation to cover the deceased woman’s funeral, medical expenses and compensate her family members.
While most medical workers are conscientious and do their best to provide adequate care for patients, negligence on their behalf can quickly lead to a patient’s death or serious injury. Anyone in North Carolina who feels like they have been victimized by medical malpractice has the option of seeking legal recourse in a civil court. If the court determines their claims are valid, they could receive reimbursement for any damages incurred as a result of the poor care provided. In those cases where the victim dies, the action would properly be brought by his or her estate against the healthcare provider.
Source: The Roanoke Times, “Family awarded $650,000 in Franklin Co. woman’s exam injury that resulted in death,” Laurence Hammack, July 24, 2013