Texas Family Learns of Fatal Medical Malpractice Years Later
One woman and her family lost their mother on March 12, 2015. Their 87-year-old mother had been admitted to Kindred Hospital Sugar Land that month for pneumonia, and they had watched her health steadily deteriorate. When they were told by the medical staff that their mother had passed away, they had assumed it was from complications with the pneumonia – not a botched medical procedure. However, a letter from a nurse on staff at the time sent in January 2017 told a much different – and horrifying – story.
Hidden Medical Malpractice
Without the knowledge or consent of the woman, a physician at the hospital attempted to insert a catheter into a major vein in her mother’s neck in order to start dialysis – a treatment that could have potentially helped her mother’s kidney issues. The physician’s first attempt did not stick and his second attempt on the other side of her mother’s neck went even worse. The woman’s mother lost an extreme amount of blood and her heart stopped. She was initially revived but her heart stopped again. During this procedure, the woman and one of her brothers attempted to visit her and were not allowed in the room.
The Physician Lacked Consent to Perform the Procedure
According to the woman, no one at the hospital discussed dialysis or the procedure of inserting a catheter for the purpose of dialysis. She neither knew about this procedure nor gave consent for the physician to move forward with it. This is also evidenced by the fact that the paperwork for the procedure is not signed by the woman or anyone else in her family. The medical records obtained by the woman show that the consent form was filled out by a nurse who printed the woman’s name but left the signature blank. Additionally, the section that states the physician discussed the procedure and its risks with the patient or their legal representative was not signed by the doctor or anyone else.
Was There a Cover-Up?
The nurse who brought the potential medical malpractice to the woman’s attention tried to correct the situation internally following the woman’s mother’s death. The nurse reached out to the hospital’s corporate office in Kentucky. She was told to let hospital leadership handle the situation. When nothing had been done, the nurse wrote to the Texas Department of State Health Services. The hospital was cited for not obtaining the woman’s consent to operate, but not other penalties occurred. Ultimately, the nurse’s anonymous letter to DSHS became known to the hospital, and she was let go.
Filing a Texas Medical Malpractice Claim
The news that the woman lost her mother to a procedure she had not given the hospital permission to undergo brought to light potential medical malpractice claims against the hospital. Despite understanding that a lawsuit will not bring her mother back or be much of a financial help, her and her attorneys have decided to move forward on principle. Her claim against the hospital states that not only did the hospital fail to gain necessary legal consent, but then someone within the facility altered medical records to conceal what happened.
Call The Bettersworth Law Firm for Help
If you lost a loved one who was admitted to the hospital and you believe something went wrong or you have not been told the whole truth, contact the New Braunfels medical malpractice attorneys of The Bettersworth Law Firm right away. We can help you investigate what went wrong and if someone was negligent, we will hold them responsible.