Alexan­der res­i­dent files mal­prac­tice suit against SMH

The Saline Courier - - FRONT PAGE - By Sarah Perry

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An Alexan­der man re­cently filed a mal­prac­tice suit against Sa­line Me­mo­rial Hos­pi­tal claim­ing that em­ploy­ees acted neg­li­gently. Along with the hos­pi­tal, Billy

Heath named spe­cific em­ploy­ees in the suit in­clud­ing Dr. Michael Paf­ford, Reg­is­tered Nurse Dora Hasley, Lab Tech­ni­cian Au­tumn Wright and Dr. Stephen E. Stur­di­vant.

Ac­cord­ing to the suit, Heath was ad­mit­ted to the hos­pi­tal for ab­dom­i­nal pain on April 11, 2019. The next day a pro­ce­dure was done to re­move his gall­blad­der.

“The surgery was per­formed with­out in­ci­dent,” ac­cord­ing to the suit.

Fol­low­ing the surgery, Heath was trans­ferred to the care of Paf­ford.

On April 13, 2019, Paf­ford or­dered a blood cul­ture be per­formed. The blood was drawn and re­ceived by the hos­pi­tal lab­o­ra­tory. That evening, Heath was dis­charged from the hos­pi­tal by

Dr. Lewis Porter, the doc­tor who com­pleted the surgery.

Af­ter Heath was dis­charged, the blood cul­ture tested pos­i­tive for sta­phy­lo­coc­cus au­reus, MRSA.

A lab tech­ni­cian, Wright, re­port­edly called Hasley to re­port the re­sult of the blood test, but Heath claims he was never in­formed of the pos­i­tive test re­sults.

On May 8, Heath re­turned to the hos­pi­tal com­plain­ing of ab­dom­i­nal pain. It was dis­cov­ered at this time that Heath wasn’t no­ti­fied that he had MRSA and had not re­ceived treat­ment for the con­di­tion. Heath “was then di­ag­nosed with acute kid­ney in­juries, os­teomyeli­tis and tho­racic spine disci­tis, which were di­rectly caused by un­treated MRSA in his blood,” ac­cord­ing to the suit.

He was later, on May 15, 2019, ad­mit­ted to St. Vin­cent Hos­pi­tal in Lit­tle Rock where he un­der­went “mul­ti­ple level spinal fu­sions be­cause his spine had col­lapsed due to os­teomyeli­tis and disci­tis in his tho­racic spine,” ac­cord­ing to the court doc­u­ments.

Ac­cord­ing to the suit, Heath’s in­juries are “per­ma­nent and a di­rect and prox­i­mate re­sult of the neg­li­gence of Sa­line Hos­pi­tal, LLC, and its agents and em­ploy­ees.”

Michael Ste­wart, CEO for the hos­pi­tal, said he can­not com­ment on the suit at this point.

“Sa­line Me­mo­rial Hos­pi­tal is aware of a law­suit re­cently filed against the hos­pi­tal and sev­eral other in­di­vid­u­als. As a mat­ter of prac­tice, we do not com­ment on ac­tive lit­i­ga­tion. We ap­pre­ci­ate your un­der­stand­ing and re­main com­mit­ted to pro­vid­ing qual

ity care to the pa­tients we serve,” he said in a pre­pared state­ment.

In con­nec­tion with the suit, Heath is re­quest­ing that he is en­ti­tled to re­cover from the fol­low­ing dam­ages:

•Pain, suf­fer­ing and emo­tional stress and grief.

•Com­pen­satory dam­ages for med­i­cal and other pe­cu­niary ex­penses in­curred in the past and in the fu­ture. •Eco­nomic loss.

•The per­ma­nency of the his in­jury and con­di­tion. •Lost wages.

•Any scars or dis­fig­ure­ment and vis­i­ble re­sults of the in­jury sus­tained by Heath.

•The rea­son­able ex­pense of any nec­es­sary help in the home, which was and will be re­quired as a re­sult of his in­juries.

•Puni­tive dam­ages for the gross neg­li­gence and reck­less con­duct of the de­fen­dants.

•Any and all other dam­ages avail­able to them un­der the laws of the State of Arkansas.

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