California Medical Malpractice Lawsuit Ends in a $44 Million Jury Awarded Verdict

After a long legal battle, Andrea Tate will receive a $44 million award as a result of medical malpractice. Tate experienced a brain hemorrhage while receiving treatment at the hospital. Despite attempts on both sides to settle the matter out of court, the case eventually made its way before a jury. After hearing all the details of the case and listening to witness testimony, the jury ruled that the hospital was 65% liable for Tate’s situation and that the doctor who treated her was 35% liable.  The trial took place over 13 days and the jury deliberated for 7 hours before returning to the court room with their verdict.

Andrea Tate was in the hospital receiving treatment for benign brain tumor when she developed a strong reaction to Heparin, the anticoagulant the medical team was treating her with. As a result of the reaction, Tate suffered severe brain damage that has left her paralyzed. Although Tate and her lawyer are pleased with the jury’s decision, the University hospital isn’t.  They warned that they plan to appeal the verdict when they issued a formal statement about the case. “We are disappointed in today’s verdict and continue to believe that appropriate care was provided. We plan to appeal this unfortunate decision.”

The case, Tate v. Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania, is significant because it represents one of the highest medical malpractice verdicts in the state. The state’s largest verdict the previous year was a $22 million verdict that was issued to the plaintiff in a Delaware County medical malpractice case. In 2014, the biggest Pennsylvania medical malpractice verdict was Lehigh County verdict of $55 million award.

Robert Ross handled the case for the plaintiff. It’s his belief that had the staff tasked with caring for Tate been paying closer attention, they would have noticed that the way she reacted to the Heparin and realized she was at a high risk for a brain hemorrhage and been able to take the steps needed to minimize the damage. Tests taken following Tate’s surgery indicated that Tate’s coagulation rapidly went from low to dangerously high.

“Instead of stopping the heparin at that point, here’s what they did, they just stopped testing,” Ross said. “Three days later, they find her virtually comatose. She had a massive bleed in her head.”

Dr. Maureen McCunn who was caring for Tate at the time, felt that the dosage was correct. In a pretrial memo, the doctor argued that the hemorrhage was in fact caused by the surgery and not the Heparian Tate was administered.

birth injury attorney Drew Warren wasn’t involved in the Tate v. Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania case but he is pleased by the results. “It appears to me that juries are beginning to fully understand the nature of medical malpractice cases and are determined to make the medical facility take responsibility for their actions, something that should encourage members of the medical profession to be more diligent about monitoring and caring for their patients.”



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College Football Player Out for the Season Due to Injuries in Car Crash

Sammy Ochoa was looking forward to a great year of football as the junior defensive tackle for Lake Travis. He was a preseason All-Central Texas Choice with a promising future, but now everything has changed. After a two-vehicle accident left Ochoa with serious injuries, doctors say that he will miss the rest of the football season.

The accident happened on Saturday when Ochoa’s 2010 Infiniti hydroplaned into an intersection and was hit on the passenger side by a 1997 pickup truck. Heavy rainstorms in the area had left roads slippery and Ochoa simply lost control of his vehicle. Both passengers involved in the accident were taken by ambulance to University Medical Center in Brackenridge. The other driver is in critical condition.

It was a tragic turn of events for Ochoa, who just one day prior helped lead his football team to a major victory over their biggest rival. As he recovers in the hospital, Ochoa told reporters that he is thankful to be alive and lucky that his seatbelt kept him from worse injuries. “It was wet on the road,” he recalled. “After I hydroplaned, I was about to get hit head-on and then I jerked the steering wheel real hard.”

The 17-year-old sustained a broken arm, a broken nose, two broken ribs, and a torn tendon in his right knee. He has already undergone surgery to repair his arm and knee, but the football player still has a long recovery ahead of him. Doctors estimate that Ochoa will spend six to eight weeks bound to a wheelchair and will be unable to return to the football field for the remainder of the season.

Ochoa told reporters that he is “heartbroken” to have to sit out the rest of the season. His team’s bid for their sixth state championship will be much more challenging without Ochoa on the field.

Car accidents are the number one cause of death in young people ages two to 34 in the United States. They are also one of the most common causes for personal injury among all ages. All drivers are at risk for accident related injuries and even those who drive with extreme caution could easily be involved in a serious or fatal accident. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reports that there are approximately 6 million car crashes in the United States every year.

After an accident, your first reaction will be to focus on your physical healing and the condition of your car. However, a whole additional battle is waiting for you after the accident is over. There is ongoing stress from costly medical bills, car repairs, and difficult insurance companies. If you are injured in a crash, you might be unable to work leaving you with serious financial obligations and no way to handle them.

Tampa personal injury attorneys step in during these difficult moments to help people get on the path to recovery. A good personal injury attorney in Tampa will act as your advocate, insuring that you receive the help you need to rebuild your life and overcome the financial obstacles that result from a car accident. If you are facing recovery from a car accident, contact a Tampa personal injury attorney today.

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