A Kentucky man has filed a medical malpractice case against a Kentucky hospital, alleging that the care he received in its emergency department by a nurse practitioner was negligent, causing him serious injuries, and further alleging that the hospital violated the Kentucky Consumer Protection Act, which specifically prohibits “unfair, false, misleading or deceptive acts or practices in the conduct of any trade or commerce.”
The Alleged Underlying Facts
When the 52-year-old man experienced severe abdominal pain while driving on April 3, 2102,, he drove to the defendant hospital’s emergency room where the hospital had advertised, “You don’t just deserve emergency care. You deserve remarkable care.” In the ER, the man was treated by a nurse practitioner and never saw a doctor, according to his medical malpractice lawsuit. He alleges that the nurse practitioner negligently failed to diagnose that he was suffering an acute and particularly severe case of diverticulitis that was life-threatening – the nurse practitioner discharged him to home with only a prescription for oral antibiotics.
Two days later, the man experienced vomiting, was transported back to the hospital, and had to undergo emergency surgery for a perforated bowel, which resulted in the man having to use a colostomy bag.
Besides naming the Kentucky hospital as a defendant, the man’s medical malpractice lawsuit names the nurse practitioner and a radiologist as additional defendants. The defendant hospital denies that it is responsible for the care provided by the nurse practitioner, alleging that she was not its employee but rather an independent contractor; the defendant nurse practitioner alleges that her care was appropriate and that she was not negligent in the man’s care.
The plaintiff’s consumer protection violation claim alleges that the hospital’s advertising led him to believe that his emergency room treatment would be provided by a qualified physician, and that had a physician treated him during his emergency room visit, he would have been properly and timely diagnosed. (One of the defendant hospital’s ads stated, “Physicians specializing in emergency medicine practice the most current techniques in quality, responsive patient- and family-centered care.” Another ad stated, “Our ER department is open around the clock, treating serious illnesses and injuries like broken bones, high fever, head injuries, severe stomach pain and uncontrolled bleeding.”)
The man’s claims against the hospital allege that the man relied on the defendant hospital’s advertising, leading him to reasonably believe that he would be seen by a physician in the defendant’s emergency room, for the severe abdominal pain that he was experiencing: “If a hospital chooses to advertise, their advertising must be truthful,” the man’s lawsuit states.
If you or a loved one were injured as a result of medical negligence in Kentucky or in another U.S. state, you should promptly seek the legal advice of a Kentucky medical malpractice attorney or a medical malpractice attorney in your state who may investigate your medical negligence claim for you and represent you in a medical malpractice case, if appropriate.
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