EMS sued for wrongful death over death of athlete
Posted on February 11th, 2010 by Zane Cagle
In North Carolina, the parents of a high school football player filed suit against the Orange County EMS for wrongful death, claiming that the EMS responder failed to take proper care of their son.
According to reports, the 17-year-old teen came home from a football scrimmage and was experiencing severe cramping all over his body. His parents were not home, so he called 911 for emergency service.
When the EMS arrived, the responder evaluated the teen for only 16 minutes despite the fact that the teen expressed his concern that he was severely dehydrated and requested an IV. The responder did not perform Orthostatics, an ECG, or take the boy’s temperature.
Believing the condition was not serious, the responder did not take the teen to the hospital. However, since he was only 17, he was required to have the the boy’s parents sign the declination form. The responder claims he attempted to call the boy’s parents, but neither cell or home phone records reflect his assertion.
When the boy’s parents returned home, they found their son unresponsive and not breathing on the living room floor. He was pronounced dead on the scene.
Autopsy reports suggest that the cause of death could have been the result of the teen’s cramping and past symptoms combined with dehydration, which may have led to a fatal cardiac event.
What it boils down to is that the EMS responder should have taken the boy’s severe cramping and other symptoms more seriously and taken him to the hospital or provided an IV. At least, the parents should have been notified of the boy’s condition and the responder should not have let a minor sign a declination form. The parents said it best: “He just left him there by himself. He was just a child.”
The wrongful death suit named Orange County, Orange County EMS, and the EMS responder.
If you or someone you loved was injured because of the negligence or intentional actions of others, you likely have a legal claim for compensation. At Page Cagle in St. Louis, our team of skilled Personal Injury Attorneys are available 24/7 and can schedule a free consultation for you today.