Jury awards $1.3 million in medical malpractice case

On February 23, 2014, in Blog, Medical, by sieditor

Accidents & mistakes can happen every day and are generally forgivable and understandable. But when the mistakes of negligent professionals impact our lives, any alibi or reason is unacceptable. Being proactive about medical care is undoubtedly the best step. Patients should do a research to understand and know their health condition, and document their symptoms. Now a jury has awarded $1.3 million to Kathie Pagan in a medical malpractice case with a long-term medical issues, both mental and physical nearly 5 years ago.

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When she underwent an elective abdominal surgery less than five years ago, Kathie Pagan operated her own company and maintained a regular workout schedule, jogging at least two miles a day.

Now, her home care and medical staffing business is gone; she tried to run it as her health failed and it failed, too. She has frequent nightmares and struggles simply emptying the dishwasher.

Complications from the June 2009 surgery left her with long-term medical issues, both mental and physical, and she continues to receive treatment for what has been a large, gaping stomach wound that never entirely healed.

“I’ve just lost everything. That is all I can tell you. I lost my faith. I lost my dignity. I lost my independence,” Pagan said Friday, Feb. 21.

Late Tuesday afternoon, a jury awarded Pagan, 43, of Jackson $1.3 million in a medical malpractice case.

After a 10-day trial before Circuit Judge Thomas Wilson, jurors found Dr. Rouchdi Rifai had a duty to meet a standard of care and he breached that duty, causing Pagan’s injuries and physical and economic losses.

Jurors awarded her $500,000 in damage for pain, suffering, scarring and disfigurement and associated mental or emotional distress and $382,000 in loss of income. Further, they found she would have lost a total of $430,000 in income through 2017. They deliberated a little less than six hours, said Pagan’s lawyer, Bruce Inosencio.

Pagan is grateful the jurors understood the pain she lived the last few years, according to a statement from the Jackson office of Inosencio and lawyers Kristina Fisk and Angela Wetherby, and the verdict will help ensure financial stability for her and her family.

“I wouldn’t necessarily call it a win, but I won,” Pagan said. No amount of money will restore her health. “I am messed up for the rest of my life for what he did to me.”

Rifai’s lawyer, Brett Bean of an East Lansing firm, said he and his client disagreed with the results. “This is a case we lost, in which, in my opinion, there was no medical malpractice.” Read More

 

Article Source: mlive                                                         

 

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