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Illinois family awarded $4.7 million in malpractice lawsuit


It took several years, but one Illinois family finally found justice after the death of one of their loved ones due to a medical error. A Cook County Circuit Court jury awarded the family $4.7 million worth of damages after finding the attending emergency room doctor and the hospital itself negligent in the death of a woman.

In July of 2006, the then-49-year-old woman was taken by paramedics to St. James Hospital after she was unable to breathe and speak because of an asthma attack. The lawsuit indicated that the doctor, after six tries in 10 minutes, was unable to insert an air tube down the woman's throat. This resulted in the woman incurring brain damage due to being deprived of oxygen. She was placed on life support, which was eventually discontinued after three days.

Two years later, the woman's son filed the wrongful death lawsuit against the hospital and two physicians. In the verdict, the jury found that the hospital and one of the physicians were indeed guilty of negligence. However, the other physician was cleared of any wrongdoing. In addition to her son, who filed the lawsuit, the woman was also survived by her 58-year-old husband.

A wrongful death lawsuit, especially one involving medical malpractice, can be difficult to bear. There is also a sense of irony, losing a loved one who, in the first place, is in the hands of able medical practitioners. However, surviving family members, such as this woman's family, recognize that they do need to be strong as they pursue justice and compensation.

During a Chicago medical malpractice lawsuit for medication errors, a misdiagnosis and other forms of medical negligence, it can help surviving family members to know that they may receive financial help with the medical expenses and other expenses that they incurred due to the unfortunate situation.

Source: CBS Local, "$4.7M Judgment Against St. James Hospital, ER Doctor," Nov. 27, 2013

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