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Judge rules in favor of family in deadly hospital negligence case

When a New York resident goes to the hospital and the doctor orders a certain treatment plan -- whether it is medication, surgery or both -- most just assume the doctor knows best and do not question the plan. The idea many have is the doctor is the one who went to medical school and has the experience to make the correct medical decisions for patients.

However, as a recent lawsuit goes to show, this is not always the case and there are times when negligence can lead to continued suffering for a patient.

Recently, a family was awarded roughly $958,200 by a jury who heard about the negligent way a patient was treated at a hospital.

According to the lawsuit, a woman was told she would need hospice care after being admitted into the hospital with infected ulcers. At the time, her family claims this woman was not physically or mentally able to process the information she was being told.

Her treatment also continued on. She was given increasing amounts of narcotics, which the lawsuit claimed led to her death within a month of first being admitted into the hospital.

In looking at what happened, and the claims against the hospital, it was successfully argued that the level of narcotics she was given was too high and that there was no reason the woman could not have lived a normal life expectancy.

Additionally, her family claimed, the hospital had performed unnecessary and painful surgeries while the woman was alive.

A judge ended up siding with the family and $300,000 in non-economic damages was awarded to the woman's husband. Their children were also each awarded $300,000 and another $8,238 in economic damages.

In looking at a case such as this one, it further proves the point that doctors do not always make the right call when it comes to treatment options. In cases where it is believed hospital negligence led to a worsening condition -- or eventual death -- an attorney who handles medical malpractice cases should be contacted.

Source: The Baltimore Sun, "Upper Chesapeake found negligent in Pylesville woman's death; family awarded $958,258 in damages," Bryna Zumber, Aug. 15, 2013

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