Posted On: March 8, 2010 by Pennsylvania Personal Injury Attorney

PA Hospital Sued Over Failure to Admit Patient

According to this article in the Philadelphia Inquirer, the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania was sued in federal court for allegedly refusing to accept Marcus Murray because he lacked health insurance.

Murray needed emergency surgery to treat a tear in a major artery. Marcus and his wife, Jean, claim that Penn initially said it would accept Mr. Murray’s transfer from Underwood Memorial Hospital in Gloucester County, NJ. Then, Penn refused after learning he had no health insurance.

The article stated that the suit named a Penn cardiothoracic surgeon, Underwood, and its emergency-room doctor on the case, alleging that Underwood failed to properly diagnose Murray’s condition and did not transfer him to a hospital capable of dealing with his problem soon enough.

Murray was experiencing chest pain and weakness and went by ambulance to the Underwood ER.

A CT scan revealed a “complex dissection of the thoracic and abdominal aorta” that would require treatment by a cardiothoracic surgeon.

Underwood does not have open-heart-surgery capability, so Murray needed to be transferred to another hospital.

According to Murray’s Underwood records, Penn had agreed to accept Murray, and he would get a helicopter to transport him to Philadelphia. Records showed that after speaking with the Penn surgeon, they were told Mr. Murray was not accepted. Nurse’s notes indicated that the reason for refusal was lack of medical insurance.

Murray was taken to a different hospital, Christiana Hospital in Delaware, where he suffered cardiac arrest. He suffered brain damage and is blind as a result of the lack of timely care at Underwood and the delay in getting him treatment because of Penn’s refusal.

The case was filed due to medical negligence and violation of the Emergency Medical Treatment and Active Labor Act.

When patients have been treated with substandard care by a doctor or healthcare provider and have suffered an injury or disability as a result, the patients have been the victim of medical malpractice. Misdiagnosis, failure to diagnose, surgical errors, prescription drug errors, birth injuries, failure to treat diseases, delay in treatment, and negligence are just a few examples of medical malpractice. People of all ages are at risk for medical malpractice, including children, adults, and the elderly.

Medical malpractice is a distressing situation, and the Philadelphia medical malpractice lawyers at Cherry, Fieger, and Marciano, LLP, will make the process as simple as possible for you. If you or a loved one has been the victim of medical malpractice in Pennsylvania, please contact Cherry, Fieger, and Marciano, LLP today for a free consultation with a Philadelphia PA medical malpractice attorney.