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Medication errors allegedly lead to woman's death

The death of a woman following treatment at a hospital recently sparked a lawsuit in another state. According to the suit, the hospital committed fatal medication errors. When hospitals in West Virginia and other states fail to exercise a reasonable degree of care, they may be held liable for the injuries or deaths they cause as a result.

In the recent out-of-state medical malpractice case, a nurse at the hospital did not follow the correct procedure after providing the woman with a powerful narcotic a couple of years ago. The woman's daughter, who recently filed the lawsuit against the hospital, claimed that her mother quit breathing and consequently died. An investigation by the state revealed wrongdoing by the medical center, and the hospital ended up being cited for an incorrect procedure.

The woman had initially visited the hospital because of a stomach ache. After she was admitted, the nurse allegedly did not assess and document the woman's level of pain. The nurse is also said to have given the woman the powerful narcotic without telling the doctors or the next nurse that she had done this. The woman, who was given morphine, narcotics and dilaudid, died of respiratory failure at age 93.

If a hospital in West Virginia fails to follow the proper procedures for treating a patient and the patient dies, the patent's loved ones have the right to sue for compensatory damages. Punitive damages might also be awarded in a medical malpractice case involving egregious fault. Financial damages from a suit involving medication errors, for instance, may help to cover medical costs and other expenses resulting from the medical malpractice incident.

Source: abc30.com, "Clovis Community Medical Center sued for malpractice in elderly woman's death", Gene Haagenson, Aug. 12, 2016

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