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Teen who lost limbs as a result of vaccine wins $12.6 mil malpractice suit

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posted on Jan, 15 2012 @ 05:57 PM
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Miramar teen who lost limbs wins $12.6 mil malpractice suit


www.orlandosentinel.com...

A Miramar teen who lost all four limbs as a result of a vaccination error 13 years ago won a $12.6 million medical malpractice award Friday against the University of Miami's Miller School of Medicine.

The amount the teen will receive, however, will nearly be cut in half, as jurors deemed her mother was 40 percent at fault.

The verdict was handed down after a five-week trial and three days of deliberations in Miami-Dade Circuit Court before Judge William Thomas. The award is expected to be appealed.

Attorneys said Shaniah Rolle suffered intestinal problems that caused her spleen, along with other organs, to be removed as a newborn. Because the spleen acts as a filter against bacteria and viruses, she had to be administered medicine that would prevent infections.

In October 1998, her mother, Queen Seriah Azulla Dabrio, took the child to the medical school's pediatric unit for a checkup. A medical assistant injected Shaniah with a special vaccination designed to protect against infection for people without spleens.

The vaccine, however, had expired five months earlier. "It was a medication error," said Fort Lauderdale attorney Crane Johnstone, who represented Shaniah.


Eight months later, Shaniah became seriously ill and was rushed to Jackson Memorial Hospital in Miami. She had a bacterial infection throughout her body that caused blood clots to form in her arms and legs. The infection led to gangrene in her limbs, and doctors amputated her arms and legs above the joints.

"She developed the very disease they were supposed to inoculate her against," Johnstone said. Her suit was filed 10 years ago.

UM's attorneys, Christopher Knight of Miami and John Hall of Atlanta, argued that Shaniah would have contracted her illness despite being given the expired vaccine. Her mother, an expert testified, failed to give Shaniah enough medication to help stave off the infection.

That was the basis for jurors assigning 40 percent negligence to Dabrio. The judge, according to the verdict form, "will make an appropriate reduction in the damages awarded."

Dr. Jeffrey Bosco, who treated Shaniah, was found by jurors to be 5 percent at fault in the case. Several other doctors named in the suit were found not liable.

UM's medical school declined to comment on the case. Fort Lauderdale attorney Charles Patrick, who also represented Shaniah, said he expects the medical school to appeal the verdict.

The lawyers would not make Shaniah or her mother available for comment pending that appeal, Patrick said, should they make statements that might affect the outcome of that litigation. Dabrio could not be reached Friday night.

Shaniah, outfitted with prosthetics, has pursued a normal existence since her amputations, Johnstone said. She's on the cheerleading squad at Miramar High School.

"She's a miraculous kid," he said. "She's probably going to live another 50 or 60 years."


This is such a sad story. I find it hard to believe that the jurors found the mother to be 40% at fault while the doctor was found to be 5% at fault. After all, he's the one who allowed an expired vaccine to be administered.

From the article, it sounds as though this is a circumstance where the vaccine was necessary since she didn't have her spleen. Who thinks to ask if the vaccine is past its expiration date?
Well, from now on, if I, or even my dog, has to have a shot for anything, I'm inquiring about the expiration date to make sure all my bases are covered and I'll keep a detailed log of all the times I treat myself with any necessary medications. I don't want a jury to find me at fault.

These are times when we can learn from others' misfortune. I hope this woman has a good and fulfilling life and can get past this horrible error in judgement in our justice system because her case proves that it is flawed. I also feel for the mother. She has to feel bad enough as it is and now she has to carry the burdon of feeling at fault for her daughter having her limbs amputated.

Maybe there are things within the case that the article isn't revealing, but I find it unbelievable that a doctor would give someone an expired vaccine. Remember, be vigilant, my friends! Sometimes that one question you should've asked is the one that changes your life.
edit on 15-1-2012 by Afterthought because: (no reason given)




posted on Jan, 15 2012 @ 06:24 PM
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If it were me, I would rather have my limb back that $12mil.



posted on Jan, 15 2012 @ 06:33 PM
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reply to post by zzombie
 


I agree. It's terrible that we place our trust in medical doctors and their staff to do the right thing, then have to suffer when they make errors that shouldn't have happened. The vaccine should've been disposed of and I'm wondering why it wasn't. Did they not go through their vaccines regularly to look for those that had expired? Was the doctor trying to save money and thought the vaccine was still good to use? It's hard to say.

If anything, science is gaining ground in leaps and bounds. Maybe that money can help her later when doctors know how to use stem cells to regrow limbs later. One can only hope. It's just too bad that she has to settle for money and cannot get back to her normal self after such a irresponsible medical error.



posted on Jan, 15 2012 @ 06:37 PM
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money would be absolutely worthless without my limbs to enjoy it, i'm extremely sorry to say, because this poor poor girl now has to deal with it, I totally feel for her... all I would ever want is the sensation of running again and feeling the air pass by...and thats worth more then 12 million dollars



posted on Jan, 15 2012 @ 06:39 PM
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reply to post by yourmaker
 


I would want to see that doctor lose his medical license. That would make me somewhat happy to know that he wasn't practicing anymore. I'd also have pressed to have the office and lab monitored to make sure they were operating properly so this wouldn't happen to anyone else.



posted on Jan, 15 2012 @ 06:46 PM
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Originally posted by zzombie
If it were me, I would rather have my limb back that $12mil.


Unfortunately awarding limbs is beyond the scope of the court!


Sad story! I don’t get how the mother was at fault though. Was she not administering the prescribed dosage of an antibiotic or something?



posted on Jan, 15 2012 @ 06:47 PM
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very sad story, -- that 12M (even if they got all of it) will barely cover the costs of all the extra care she will need growing up and as an adult.



posted on Jan, 15 2012 @ 06:55 PM
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And so we have another case where the use of a hyberbaric oxygen chamber may have saved her limbs.

drcranton.com...

I'm really surprized at the award made on the basis of an allegedly "expire" drug.

As to safety of those "expired" drugs:
"One of the largest studies ever conducted that supports the above points about "expired drug" labeling was done by the US military 15 years ago, according to a feature story in the Wall Street Journal (March 29, 2000), reported by Laurie P. Cohen. The military was sitting on a $1 billion stockpile of drugs and facing the daunting process of destroying and replacing its supply every 2 to 3 years, so it began a testing program to see if it could extend the life of its inventory.
The testing, conducted by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA), ultimately covered more than 100 drugs, prescription and over-the-counter. The results showed that about 90% of them were safe and effective as far as 15 years past their original expiration date."

www.medscape.com...



posted on Jan, 15 2012 @ 07:00 PM
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reply to post by OhZone
 


Wow! That many drugs were still good 15 years past their expiration date?!
Looks like big pharma has done it again. Posting expiration dates on vaccines and drugs that are still good. Sounds like a racket to me!

Thanks for the info and, yes, the hyperbaric chamber probably could've helped this girl.

Edit to Add: If the expired vaccine wasn't the cause of her losing her limbs, maybe the mother is at fault? I don't think we're getting the entire story here.
edit on 15-1-2012 by Afterthought because: (no reason given)



posted on Jan, 15 2012 @ 07:03 PM
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reply to post by Afterthought
 


Sorry. no human activity, no matter how they tried, has been without mistakes.



posted on Jan, 15 2012 @ 07:09 PM
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reply to post by Afterthought
 


BTW, this high priced nonsense is exactly that what makes your health care unsustainable.
Kick ALL the lawyers out, for a start.
People, even good people do make mistakes!!!!!
How many times have you had a problem with car-mechanics or plumbers.
They are supposed too to know what they are doing.



posted on Jan, 15 2012 @ 07:29 PM
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reply to post by Pokoia
 


Star for you! You're on to something!

Texas has Loser Pay….it should be national!! It doesn’t prevent legit lawsuits but it stops frivolous lawsuits, which are partly to blame for rising heathcare costs in America (that plus Doctors ridiculously over charging insurance companies...but that's another topic). I don’t think the lawsuit in the OP was frivolous though.


HB 274 implements several measures to streamline and lower the cost of litigation in Texas courts, allowing parties to resolve disputes more quickly, more fairly and less expensively. This includes:

• Allowing a trial court to dismiss a frivolous lawsuit immediately if there is no basis in law or fact for the lawsuit;

• Allowing a trial judge to send a question of law directly to the appellate court without requiring all parties to agree if a ruling by a court of appeals could decide the case;

• Allowing plaintiffs seeking less than $100,000 to request an expedited civil action; and

• Encouraging the timely settlement of disputes and helping prevent a party from extending litigation by seeking a "home run" if they have already been offered a fair settlement.

A 2011 survey of NFIB/Texas members showed nearly 80 percent of small business owners favor implementing a statewide loser pay legal system.

link



posted on Jan, 15 2012 @ 07:45 PM
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reply to post by Pokoia
 


Without knowing more information, I can't agree with you. SOME lawyers do help people. In the instance of doctors, yes, they make mistakes, but they are still supposed to be more careful than your average person. If a mechanic screws up my car, my life is made difficult temporarily, not permanently.

THIS is a frivolous law suit that never should have been allowed to go forth:
"Florida man guilty in DUI deaths sues victim's family"
www.orlandosentinel.com...

SPRING HILL, Florida — A Florida man who pleaded guilty to DUI manslaughter in a Christmas 2007 car crash is now suing the family of one of the three people killed.

The lawsuit filed by David Belniak, 38, of Spring Hill claims the crash wasn't his fault. Belniak was sentenced to 12 years in prison after his guilty plea. Authorities said Belniak had alcohol and drugs in his system when he crashed his car into the back of the victims' car, stopped at a red light.

Belniak attorney Debra A. Tuomey tells the Tampa Bay Times in a story published Saturday that he deserves compensation for pain and suffering and medical bills. The lawsuit claims deceased driver Ray McWilliams was responsible for the accident.

A relative of the victims calls the lawsuit ridiculous.


So, yes, some lawsuits are clogging up the system, but we cannot shut all of them down completely. This is still America and everyone has a right to face their accusers and victims have a legal right to retribution and get some sort of help for the future if they are unable to make a sustainable living due to someone's negligence.



posted on Jan, 15 2012 @ 07:59 PM
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Originally posted by seabag
reply to post by Pokoia
 


Star for you! You're on to something!

Texas has Loser Pay….it should be national!! It doesn’t prevent legit lawsuits but it stops frivolous lawsuits, which are partly to blame for rising heathcare costs in America (that plus Doctors ridiculously over charging insurance companies...but that's another topic). I don’t think the lawsuit in the OP was frivolous though.


HB 274 implements several measures to streamline and lower the cost of litigation in Texas courts, allowing parties to resolve disputes more quickly, more fairly and less expensively. This includes:

• Allowing a trial court to dismiss a frivolous lawsuit immediately if there is no basis in law or fact for the lawsuit;

• Allowing a trial judge to send a question of law directly to the appellate court without requiring all parties to agree if a ruling by a court of appeals could decide the case;

• Allowing plaintiffs seeking less than $100,000 to request an expedited civil action; and

• Encouraging the timely settlement of disputes and helping prevent a party from extending litigation by seeking a "home run" if they have already been offered a fair settlement.

A 2011 survey of NFIB/Texas members showed nearly 80 percent of small business owners favor implementing a statewide loser pay legal system.

link


The problem is that we, the rest of the world , are importing your madness.
Prices go up here because there are higher insurance costs for doctors.
In a society, like ours, socialist, all costs are covered especial where you have not the means to pay for it.
Insurance company's make the doctors lie and there the problem begins.



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