By: Joseph Smith
Ohio University has agreed to pay $1 million to settle a lawsuit brought
by the father of a student who died of bacterial meningitis in 2010. The
student died days after she became ill with a headache and fever. From
February 16, 2009 until February 7, 2010, six students had been diagnosed
with bacterial meningitis and were treated; however, school officials
decided not to disclose that it was Strain B meningitis which is not prevented
by the meningitis vaccine.
On the night of February 14, 2010, the student began experience headaches,
a stiff neck, and chills. The next morning she and her boyfriend called
the school's health center and explained her symptoms, only to be
told to take Tylenol, drink water and rest. The student's symptoms
worsened that day to the point she called an ambulance and was taken to
a local hospital where she was diagnosed with meningitis. She died two
days later without regaining consciousness.
Following her death, the student's father brought suit against the
school alleging negligence and wrongful death. The school argued that
the student had never actually gone to the health center and spoke to
a doctor. It also argued that those who cared for the student at the hospital
were negligent. This in spite of the fact the attending doctor at the
health center testified at her deposition that she had concerns that nurses
and medical assistants were not properly identifying meningitis in students.
This case is an important reminder of the dangers of meningitis, a swelling
and infection of the membranes around the brain and spinal cord. If not
treated quickly and with appropriate medical case it can result in serious
brain damage, or as like this case, death. These potentially fatal consequences
make it so important to get proper medical care as soon as possible. It
also makes it incredibly important for medical professionals to properly
identify and treat meningitis – a failure to diagnose or confusing
it with a common cold or the flu can be deadly.
The personal injury attorneys at Chaikin, Sherman, Cammarata & Siegel,
P.C., have years of experience representing individuals who have been
seriously injured as a result of the negligence of medical professionals.
These cases require attorneys who understand the very serious consequences
of such negligence and the dedication and skill it takes to succeed on
these claims. If you or someone you love have been injured as a result
of medical negligence, please call the attorneys at Chaikin, Sherman,
Cammarata, & Siegel, P.C. for a free consultation.