Sydney woman receives $90,000 in compensation after being administered unnecessary medication in public hospital

Published 07 May 2018

This matter involved a woman who attended upon a public hospital after suffering from heart palpitations. After being admitted to hospital, she awoke in the middle of the night after suffering from a nightmare. A doctor came to her and was of the impression that she was experiencing further palpitations. Despite our client’s objections and insistence that she was not experiencing palpitations, the doctor administered a medication that is typically used in life threatening situations to treat and prevent a number of types of irregular heartbeats.

Unfortunately, our client had an adverse reaction to this medication and began to suffer extreme pain, shortness of breath, paralysis and severe anxiety with fears that she may die. This episode lasted approximately 20 minutes and had a significant effect on our client’s physical and psychological health. As a result of her treatment in hospital, our client ultimately suffered a painful blood clot and lasting psychiatric injuries requiring ongoing treatment.

Based on the distressing outcome our client suffered as a result of her treatment in hospital, she contacted Gerard Malouf and Partners to enquire about whether she was entitled to compensation in relation to her injuries as a result of potential medical negligence. Christine Beshay, Accredited Personal Injury Specialist, took carriage of the matter.

After hearing the details of our client’s circumstances, Ms Beshay was of the view that our client had reasonable prospects of success based on the treating doctor’s negligence which lead to our client suffering from further injury. She qualified a respected expert cardiologist who prepared a report on negligence, stating that administering the medication was unnecessary in the circumstances and the adverse effects of the medication could have been avoided if it was administered in a manner that fell within accordance with professional standards.

We had our client assessed by an expert psychiatrist in order to determine the extent of her psychological injuries and future treatment requirements. Mindful of the expenses associated with litigation, we arranged for the parties to participate in a settlement conference in order to attempt to resolve the matter without proceeding to hearing.

During the settlement conference, Ms Beshay and our expert medical negligence barrister ultimately secured a substantial settlement figure of $90,000 for our client which compensated her for her past and future wage loss, domestic care, psychiatric treatment and her pain and suffering. Our client was happy with this outcome and appreciative of our assistance to resolve this matter without proceeding to a hearing in court.

If you have suffered injury in the course of medical treatment and believe the treating practitioner may have been negligent, please contact our expert medical negligence lawyers for free over-the-phone advice on 1800 004 878.