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Estate of Doe v. Urgent Care and Hospital

S/NY – Judith McMahon

Date of Settlement 3/30/23

17 year old boy had a five day history of a fever and sore throat. On May 11, 2018 he presented to urgent care with no fever but an elevated heart rate. It was assumed his elevated heart rate was secondary to dehydration. He tested negative for rapid strep and flu. He was given IV fluids and his heart rate was not checked again which plaintiff maintained was a departure from the standard of care since if the heart rate was still elevated following IV hydration, then sepsis should have been considered, labs drawn, given antibiotics and sent to the ER. Following IV hydration, the decedent was told to go home and rest. At 5am the following morning the decedent woke his mother and told her he needs to go to the hospital because he is dying. They arrived at the hospital at 5:45am. His blood was drawn at 6am and reported back at 8:30 a.m. showing a 10% banding – indicative of sepsis. The lab results were not read for hours delaying the administration of antibiotics until 12:30 p.m. Thereafter, the decedent was transferred from that hospital to it’s sister site. A nurse called over to give report and informed the second year resident of the pediatric ICU that this patient was coming over and had an elevated lactic acid level. The resident did not know the relevance of that value. The pediatric intensivist attending was unaware of the decedent’s arrival in his department for over two hours and after the decedent crashed and died of cardiopulmonary arrest. Plaintiff maintains the hospital delayed the diagnosis of sepsis, delaying the administration of antibiotics and had the antibiotics been administered shortly after the labs came back, the decedent would have survived and made a full recovery.

Defendant Urgent care maintained that the decedent left well appearing and that the administration of a broad spectrum antibiotic would not have assisted with the infection the decedent had. The defendant Urgent care also maintained that the decedent could have been saved had the hospital administered antibiotics when they should have. The Defendant hospital maintained that the decedent did not look sick.

several hours of pain and suffering and respiratory distress prior to death during code.

Hospital paid $900k. Urgent Care paid $150k.