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Death of a loved one because of negligent hospital care | Our Client’s Story

Posted on 22nd April 2020
Catherine Henry Lawyers
Catherine Henry Lawyers

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Government must act on regional and rural health inquiry hearings

We have successfully settled a claim for a large sum for our clients against a regional hospital and a general practitioner for negligent hospital care.

The personal injury claim and compensation to relatives claim were in relation the treatment of our clients’ indigenous brother who died of gangrene and undiagnosed peripheral vascular disease after surgery.

Events leading to the death of the deceased

A number of years before his death, our clients’ brother had surgery for rectal cancer. The cancer was cured but he was left with a permanent colostomy (stoma). Because he had a disability, he was unable to engage in personal stoma care and went to live in a low care retirement home.

While he lived at the home, he fractured his left kneecap. He had pain after his knee surgery which responded to treatment.

Several years later he underwent hernia surgery. Following this surgery, he needed two further operations to re-fashion the stoma. When he left hospital he went to live in a high care facility.

He remained unwell and returned to hospital with gastro-intestinal symptoms. He had a gastroscopy and remained in hospital for two weeks. While in hospital, he experienced pain in both legs, fever, and an increasing red/dark/purple area to the left big toe. He was discharged back to his aged care facility under the care of another GP. He continued to complain of pain in his legs and there were signs of decreased blood flow in his feet and fingertips.

Sadly, he died days later. His post-mortem said the cause of death was undiagnosed peripheral vascular disease and gangrene.

Our case for significant compensation

We sought opinions from experts. A general surgeon said that peripheral vascular disease was not, but should have been, considered and treated before gangrene set in ultimately leading to the man’s death.

Our clients witnessed their loved one in pain and helpless in the hospital. They felt that their concerns about his pain were ignored. They continued to feel uninformed and helpless once he was returned to the high-care facility. They suffered significant psychological harm due to the way he was treated and died.

Let us fight for you or your loved one

If you or a loved one has experienced injuries as a result of medical negligence, our caring, expert lawyers can help advocate for you and seek justice. Please contact us to talk about the options available to you.

Taking legal action can also help change health care practices and hold health care professionals to account for negligent hospital care so other people do not to have experience what you went through.

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