You should be able to trust that your child will be safe at a hospital.
Of all places, a hospital is where you should feel safe to leave your children while they are being treated. When your child is in the hospital, you already have enough on your mind and you shouldn’t also have to worry about whether or not your child will be safe in their hands.
Unfortunately, this is not always the case.
A Child Forgotten at Texas Children’s Hospital
Recently a lawsuit for $1 million dollars in damages was filed against Texas Children’s Hospital in Houston under the Texas Wrongful Death Act. The lawsuit is in reaction to an incident that happened this spring where a child passed away after it is alleged that hospital staff took more than 20 minutes to respond to alarms of falling oxygen levels.
“Michael and Carol Betty Barnett say their 17-year-old son, Seth, had cerebral palsy and was admitted to the west campus of the hospital on April 7 for pneumonia.
Two days later, his oxygen level dropped and alarms went off. However, according to the lawsuit, no one at the hospital responded for more than 20 minutes.
The episode caused severe brain damage and Seth never regained consciousness, according to court pleadings. His parents took him off life support a few days later, said their attorney Robert S. Kwok.” (Houston Chronicle)
Another Child Not Protected
In 2012, the parents of Willie Wilson faced a similar situation at the Children’s Medical Center Dallas, where their child was neglected while in the care of the hospital. Willie was in the hospital because of a seizure caused by a brain tumor, but was talking and asking to go home the day his mother decided to go home from the hospital late one night. Before she left though she voiced some concerns she had about his bed being too high with the nurse on duty:
“I asked them if they could lower the bed, restrain him or get a nurse in here with him,” Frankie Wilson said. “She said, ‘No, he’ll be fine. I’m right here at the desk. I’ll be watching him.” (NBCDFW.com)
The next day Willie Wilson passed away. It wasn’t until after the parents returned to the hospital and were allowed to see him that they noticed that he had cuts and bruises under his eye and his teeth were broken. Three hours earlier the staff had found him on the floor after he had fallen out of his bed face down.
Two different children’s hospitals and just two examples of what can happen if or when hospital staff fail to do their job. As a parent, you have every right to insist on action from hospital staff to protect your child. If you feel something is not right, don’t be afraid to speak up.
If you have experienced a situation where you feel that a loved one was seriously injured or lost their life due to healthcare neglect, call for a free case evaluation.