A Florida child, only 22-months-old, died from pneumococcal meningitis just days after a doctor signed a statement saying that he simply had a noncontagious cold. His parents were told the boy could be sent back to his care center.
Now, his grieving parents have stepped forward to share their tale of frustration and sorrow, as they start the move toward a medical malpractice and wrongful death lawsuit.
Unable to get proper care at every turn
The child's parents tried multiple times to get their son appropriate help. They felt that the doctor's diagnosis was wrong from the start. However, none of the doctors seemed to be listening.
They took him to the pediatrician three times trying to get a diagnosis and medication that would help the boy as he conditioned worsened. They also took him to emergency rooms at Jackson Memorial and Nicklaus Children's.
Every doctor seemed to have the same response: Take Tylenol for his fever and wait. Doctors deemed his condition so low-risk, despite a 103 degree fever, that one hospital redirected the child to a clinic instead.
Urgent care clinics are unable to provide the same level of diagnostic care that a full-service hospital can. The doctor there diagnosed the child with bronchitis and wrote prescriptions to treat it.
Treatment finally comes too late to help
It wasn't until the child was unable to stand on his own that the child was finally admitted to the hospital and given the precious antibiotics that he needed to treat his actual condition. He was diagnosed with meningitis the next day -- but it was too late. The little boy died on Dec. 3, 2017.
At this point, attorneys are gathering the medical records they need to determine if a lawsuit is possible. A failure to properly diagnose a condition in a timely fashion can sometimes steal a patient's only chance at survival. In that situation, a wrongful death or medical malpractice claim is possible. In this situation, several different doctors and medical facilities may all be liable for the child's death.
Source: Miami Herald, "Parents followed doctors’ orders for sick child but meningitis diagnosis came too late," Daniel Chang, Dec. 14, 2017