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$1.75 million for surgical errors awarded in malpractice case

Two siblings fighting on behalf of their deceased mother have won a malpractice case against an out-of-state medical center. Delaware residents may be pleased to hear that the brother and sister were able to convince a jury that surgical errors committed at the center contributed to their mother's death in 2013. While the defense argued that standard practice was observed, the jury ruled in favor of the family. 

According to the filing, the 44-year-old woman was admitted for a hiatal hernia repair surgery in November 2013. The filing accuses the attending doctors of failing to diagnose and treat a stomach perforation which occurred during the surgery. As a result, the woman's condition continued to deteriorate, and she died just over a year later on Dec. 27, 2013. 

The filing took place a year after that in December 2014, citing negligence causing death. The jury found in favor of the plaintiffs, and awarded the now-adult children of the deceased woman a total of $1.75 million. The defense intends to file a motion to lower that payment, citing a 1975 law capping malpractice awards at $250,000, but the motion has yet to be filed as of this report. 

The specifics of malpractice law can be complicated, both here in Delaware and elsewhere in the country. This is why it is important in cases where surgical errors have led to complications to secure the support of an experienced attorney to help move the malpractice suit forward. While malpractice awards do not necessarily ease grief in those who have lost a loved one, they can be instrumental in ensuring final arrangements are covered and documented losses are paid. 

Source:, "Jury awards family $1.75M in UCLA malpractice lawsuit", Hoa Quach, July 15, 2016

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