A 36-year-old successful business woman was found by her mother to be confused and lethargic. As her mother drove her to the nearest emergency room, she developed a droop on one side of her face, strongly suggesting a potential disease process in the brain. Tragically, the emergency room staff delayed the proper treatment until after she had suffered a profound brain injury. A Raynes Lawn Hehmeyer team led by Tim Lawn and Stephen Raynes convinced the jury that viral encephalitis should have been high on the doctor’s list of potential diagnoses shortly after her arrival at the hospital. By presenting the testimony of highly respected doctors, Lawn and Raynes persuaded the jury that time was of the essence, and that a timely first dose of medication could have stopped reproduction of the virus before it caused a permanent brain injury. The result achieved allowed this family to provide for their daughter’s needs over the remainder of her life.
A physician failed to recognize the signs of distress from a drop in fetal heart rate during the delivery of a baby which resulted in decreased oxygen going to the baby’s brain and cerebral palsy. Tim Lawn analyzed the fetal monitor strips and was able to document that a timely C-section delivery would have prevented any injury. After Mr. Lawn had completed jury selection, the Hospital finally started settlement negotiations. As trial progressed, the child’s case was settled for $10,000,000, which ensured her future.
A boy was admitted to a large children’s hospital and was misdiagnosed with Guillain-Barré Syndrome, despite many symptoms being inconsistent with the diagnosis. The child therefore did not receive treatment for the disease he actually had, acute disseminated encephalomyelitis, which could have been cured if he was promptly treated. This misdiagnosis has left the teenager confined to a wheelchair. Chuck Hehmeyer, working with Roy DeCaro, investigated the hospital’s treatment and, using a powerful video settlement brochure, negotiated a $7 million settlement that will address all of the boy’s life care and educational needs.
$5 Million Wrongful Death Settlement for Montgomery County Hospital Ignoring Complaints of Severe Headache
When Jason–a young single man–arrived at a Montgomery County hospital, the Emergency Department physician ignored Jason’s complaint of a severe headache, which actually signaled the presence of a colloidal cyst that was increasing intra-cranial pressure. After twelve hours of neglect, Jason died.
Because Tim Lawn had successfully tried in NJ another client’s case related to the failure of an Emergency Room doctor to diagnose a colloidal cyst, Mr. Lawn was asked to lead the Raynes Lawn Hehmeyer team that in the Estate’s claims against the hospital. Mr. Lawn documented the negligence, oversaw the effective presentation of damages, and negotiated a $5,000,000 settlement even before the case was listed for trial.
After a normal pregnancy and normal fetal monitoring for more than nine hours, baby Ella began to show signs of deterioration. She had some concerning lab results, climbing maternal blood pressure and some variable decelerations on the strip. As labor progressed the signs became more obvious that there could potentially be issues with this delivery and baby Ella’s oxygenation. Despite a prolonged late deceleration requiring fetal resuscitation as well as a non reassuring fetal heart rate tracing, medical personnel failed to recognize the severity of the situation and baby Ella was born limp with no heart rate. Regina Foley prepared the case for trial and retained a team of medical experts to testify that the nursing staff and attending obstetrician failed to appropriately respond to the signs of fetal distress, improperly administered Pitocin, and should have delivered the distressed baby by emergency caesarian section. The birth asphyxia caused by these failures led to permanent brain damage for baby Ella. Regina Foley successfully resolved the case on behalf of Ella and her parents at mediation for $4,200,000.
When an honors student died mysteriously in the hospital after months of inpatient treatment for gastrointestinal symptoms, her parents turned to Chuck Hehmeyer to find out why. Tragically, her physicians had made the wrong initial diagnosis and then performed the wrong type of surgery. Ignoring the signs of her deteriorating condition which should have alerted them, her doctors never reexamined their diagnosis while she slowly and painfully wasted away until she died. As part of the settlement, the hospital instituted new patient safety procedures to help ensure that this never happened to another child.
Because of Chuck Hehmeyer’s national reputation as an advocate for children with rare diseases, an Arizona family asked Chuck to investigate why their baby suffered brain damage at an emergency room. Chuck learned that the child had a previously undiagnosed mitochondrial disorder. The ER should have performed a glucose check when the child arrived unresponsive, but the ER staff failed to do so. This delay in providing glucose resulted in the boy suffering brain damage.
After a California family found out their son was injured by the delayed diagnosis of his metabolic disorder, they asked Chuck Hehmeyer to use his expertise in this field to review his care. Chuck discovered that the hospital had been participating in a state pilot program to provide supplemental metabolic screening to all newborns, but had failed to offer the test to this family. The hospital argued that it was not obligated to provide the screening because it was a “pilot” program, despite knowing that the inexpensive screening could have detected the child’s disorder and, with prompt diet changes, prevented a lifetime of disability. As Chuck has done in a number of states, he convinced the hospital that, even when there is not a state mandate, good medical care mandates screening all children for metabolic disorders.
Jean was a young woman who became pregnant with twins at a point where she was unemployed and on public assistance. Because of anesthesia mistakes, she died after childbirth. The defendant hospital tried to minimize the loss, arguing that her lack of employment at the time and minimal experience in the workplace made the case one of limited value. Raynes partners Jerry McHugh and Martina McLaughlin rejected this thinking, and retained a national expert on the importance of a mother’s presence in the lives of children. The children’s father had abandoned them, effectively making the children orphans. By thoughtfully building a case on the twins’ loss of parenting, the children’s financial future was assured.
Janice died as the result of an overwhelming sepsis infection after being in Riddle Memorial Hospital for 14 hours. Over a seven day jury trial, Roy DeCaro convinced the Delaware County jury that Janice’s doctors should have acted more quickly to save her life; prompt medical care would have saved her life. The jury awarded $3,800,000 to the family, one of the largest awards ever in this County for medical malpractice.