Minneapolis Medical Malpractice and Civil Litigation Attorney, Kathleen Loucks, shares a very powerful story about the victory of a medical malpractice case she worked on.
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Sure, actually, my most recent outcome was in the fall of last year. I had the first plaintiff’s medical malpractice verdict against the University of Minnesota Physicians. That was a transplant case in which – it’s kind of a unique situation. There was a little boy in New York who got very sick, and at one point in time, he had a diagnosis of viral meningitis and then he had a diagnosis of bacterial meningitis.
He eventually died. His parents decided to transplant his organs. So, we have these organizations that essentially farm out the organs to people across the country who need them. And in Minnesota, the organs were accepted for transplant. And so my client, her name was Jody, she was a 34 year old woman, single mother. She had a three year old, autistic boy. She received the pancreas.
Well, what we didn’t know at the time was that the pancreas and the boy who donated his organs had a rare form of cancer, and my client ultimately died as well as every person that received an organ from the boy. So, the issue with that case was whether or not the organs should have been accepted for transplant. And what was kind of a red herring was that it wasn’t really about the cancer ‘cause no one could have suspected that the boy had cancer.
Because he had these two different diagnoses, the transplant was too risky, and the organs were too risky to accept for transplantation. That was our theory of the case. So, when we tried it, the only question the jury had to answer was was the transplant surgeon negligent in accepting the pancreas for transplant, because we already knew the causation piece. So, the jury found that the doctor was negligent and awarded the family over $1 million in damages. That was a good result.
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