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Country Discussion Topics
To add your comments to this topic, click on one of the 'Reply' links below.

Touchy Subject- Jesica Santillan Transplant
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Jimbob    Posted 02-23-2003 at 16:11:58       [Reply]  [No Email]
Nothing can replace a loved one. However, do understand this case will result in a settlement of millions of dollars & an American lawyer will push this case to the maximum. All of us (the system) will pay for this tragic error. Is it 'right' and I use the word loosely & cautiously that immigrants that reciently came into this country seeking this medical help be compensated for their loss to the tune of millions. They WERE pursuing saving a childs life, their childs life- anyone would do this, not an evil quest here. I can not pretend to know or experience this kind of suffering.


Alvin NE WI    Posted 02-25-2003 at 19:50:21       [Reply]  [No Email]
All good comments. I would like to add mine. Can't say who to blame, just like these other events that have happened recently, fires and stampede..A lot of finger pointing. Most of us do not have sufficent insurance to pay for a transplant or lucky to get a donor organ much less twice. We also have to remenber that 50% of the doctors graduate in the bottom half of their class, likewise with those money lynching lawyers..When people are here as illegal aliens they shouldn't have any rights but they receive better treatment than any one of us on this page..


Farmwench    Posted 02-24-2003 at 10:53:07       [Reply]  [No Email]
Doesn't matter if the victim was from Mars; Duke Medical killed a patient with malpractice, incompetence and downright stupidity. For a "clerical error" to have caused this gross negligence, it would have had to have been repeated over and over by multiple people, at Duke, and at the transplant central coordinating agency. Even a first year medical student knows you check, double check, recheck and check again before you put ANYTHING into a patient (even an aspirin). When you cut someone open, remove an organ, and put another one in it's place, you don't get to say "oops, I forgot to check and make sure this wasn't guaranteed to kill my patient". Duke should certainly NOT have been allowed to perform the second transplant, and they should have to sit on their hands for a good long while until someone new takes over their transplant program, and ALL the incompetents who helped kill this child are sent into other lines of work. McDonalds is probably hiring.
Duke and the doctors responsible don't need a spanking, they need to be taken out and whipped bloody and unconscious. Having to pay big wads of cash is the only thing that makes a big enough impression to prevent this sort of thing from happening again. This family deserves the millions of dollars that Duke and the surgeons (and their insurance companies) will have to pay. There is NO EXCUSE for what happened to that little girl.


Cindi    Posted 02-24-2003 at 11:08:59       [Reply]  [No Email]
I agree. The fact that she was an illegal alien does not make her any less a valuable person in anyone's eyes. It's the irony that gets me. I could fall over dead in the hospital having camped out there for need of a new heart and I wouldn't be given a second glance when I keeled over because I couldn't pay for it. When do I become as important as she apparently was to have a special charity cause in my own name. I venture to say there's a half dozen pople just like her in my county alone that will die because of lack of funds. Dang right the hospital should be held highly accountable and made to pay. But then we have to pay higher doctor/hospital bills, to compensate for the higher malpractice rates. It's a vicious circle. I don't think there is a fix, quick or otherwise. It's gone beyond fixing and now we're looking at natural elimination 'finance style'. Depends on where you are on the food/money chain as to whether or not you live.


Hal/WA    Posted 02-24-2003 at 16:51:11       [Reply]  [No Email]
I have had several people close to me die from complications of conditions that would have been CURED by a heart transplant. They didn't get a transplant for various reasons: lack of a compatible organ being available, or lack of proper insurance coverage, or being too sick by the time they were eligible. They were useful, educated, valuable and cabable persons who might have benefitted society and certainly would have benefitted their families had they lived.

I guess I do have some problems with the fact that, because of this series of mistakes, this family that was here illegally will probably become rich. Or at least the lawyers involved will become rich. Mistakes happen...to all of us. I would hope that this situation leads to the medical establishment being a little more careful to verify compatibility. What I hope does not happen is that the medical establishment quits doing transplants, because of the potential liability. Know how hard it is to find an M.D. that will deliver babies? The lawyers have done that.

I hope the judge or jury that ends up decididng the award in this mess carefully considers the objective value of Jesica's life (earning capability, education, chance of survival without the surgery, etc.) and not just the subjective value of a child's life to her family.

My heart goe out to the family--I cannot imagine the loss of one of my children. But my heart also goes out to the medical professionals who now have to live with the fact that they screwed up.

The only real winners in the situation will be the lawyers, as usual.


No Newborn Deliveries in PA......Jimbob    Posted 02-24-2003 at 20:02:51       [Reply]  [No Email]
I understand it is getting impossible to find any doctor willing to get involved in any child birth. Law suits has caused insurance to skyrocket to the point the doctors have left PA to practice in other states.


Cindi    Posted 02-25-2003 at 03:43:34       [Reply]  [No Email]
Have those little critters at home. That's what I did. Midwifes are usually easy enough to find.


Hal/WA    Posted 02-25-2003 at 19:23:48       [Reply]  [No Email]
Home deliveries are great if everything works right. But if my wife had not been at the hospital for the birth of our second daughter, the baby would have died and so possibly would have my wife. Only an emergency C-section saved our daughter's life (the cord was wrapped tightly around her neck and she was in grave fetal distress). It only took about 2 minutes for the doctor to cut the baby out. She was saved and has no evidence of any damage whatsoever. He later performed C-sections in the birth of our other 3 children. They are all great.

That wonderful, caring doctor ended his practice and retired much younger than he wanted to because he could no longer buy malpractice insurance and still make a profit. What a waste! Medicine is an inexact science and where people are involved, there always will be mistakes made occasionally.

In case you had not picked up on it, I don't think much of Lawyers. I suppose they are a necessary evil though, in today's society.


PDQ    Posted 02-24-2003 at 06:30:11       [Reply]  [Send Email]

I really dont understand how giving someone millions of dollars fixes the situation. Are the people who suffer the loss any less heart broken because they got oodles of money? Is destroying still more peoples lives just compensation? It wont bring back the girl.

I think a sincere apology, a recognition that a serious mistake was made, and a maybe $200,000. should be enough. Oh, and maybe that doctor should not be allowed to do that kind of surgery again.

I also think that when folks sue and win a large almount of money something is lost in that kind of settlement. The idea of true forgiveness.


Fawteen    Posted 02-24-2003 at 06:54:30       [Reply]  [No Email]
Not being what you could call a good (or even mediocre)Christian, I have some trouble with the whole forgiveness thing, so that's a little beside the point for me.

This society worships money. If you want to spank them, take some of their money. Several folks have made the point that the lawyers are the ones who really make out here, and that's true, and it's also wrong, and needs to change.

But for the moment, that's how the system works.


Tom A    Posted 02-24-2003 at 05:46:20       [Reply]  [Send Email]
This is a tough question, but it affects all of us not just because of this immediate case but because law-suits (or the threat of them) are one big thing that is making health care unaffordable for everyone.

Seems to me everyone wants to get rich quick, and a lawsuit is the easiest way to do that, short of hitting the lottery.

From what I've heard of this particular case, it was a terrible mistake that could have been prevented it only the surgeon and the transplant coordinator had done one final verbal confirmation. I guess I have to say that honest mistakes do happen in this world, despite our best efforts at preventing them. Apparently, this wasn't the hospitals fault or really anybody else's, and it doesn't appear to be gross negligence on anybody's part.

If an investigation of the incident confirms that, well I don't think there should be a lawsuit. Call me naive, but that's how I feel. I was rear-ended by a loaded dump truck a couple of years ago. Was stopped at the end of a traffic tie-up and suddenly his bumper was touching my shoulder. God was watching over me (who knows why??) and I walked away totally unscratched. Lots of friends told me I should sue, some even advised that I had "back problems" but that didn't seem right. I let it all drop, and am glad I did. Stopping unwarranted lawsuits starts with each of us.

I just pray for the little girl (who I am sure is now in heaven) and for her family, who aren't.
Tom


Maggie/TX    Posted 02-23-2003 at 21:15:54       [Reply]  [No Email]
This was a wrongful death due to negligence. I would hope that some really good lawyer helps this family find out just who is to blame and does what needs to be done here.


Fawteen    Posted 02-23-2003 at 17:55:08       [Reply]  [No Email]
That was a MASSIVE and INEXCUSABLE screwup. They need to be spanked, and HARD!

I don't think the citizenship status should even be a factor.

In fact, I'm getting just a bit tired of all this immigrant-bashing.

Not many native "Americans" on this board that I'm aware of. It's not the immigrants that are the problem, it's the da#n fool politicians that are shovelling out the bennies with both hands.


Jimbob    Posted 02-24-2003 at 05:41:05       [Reply]  [No Email]
It is true the European (white) people were foreigners that took the land from the American Indians & forced them on tiny reservations all over the US.
The Santillan family did not just drop off their child at 'emergency', but had funds raised for them over a period of over a year to afford the operation.
The system being 'overtaxed' is a different issue & greedy lawyers are breaking the system.


Red Dave    Posted 02-24-2003 at 05:35:20       [Reply]  [No Email]
I agree that the doctors, hospital and everybody else who screwed this up needs to be spanked. Unfortunatly in this country, all that means is that some prick lawyer will get rich, the family will get peanuts and the rest of us end paying more for health care for the rest of our lives to pay off the dam lawyer and the insurance company.
There needs to be a way to "spank" them without the lawyers getting rich by sucking all the blood out of the rest of us.


Fawteen - You, Sir    Posted 02-24-2003 at 05:38:30       [Reply]  [No Email]
Have spoken the Truth.

My master plan for World Domination starts by sending all politicians and lawyers to Iraq...


I'D ARGUE THAT POINT,,,    Posted 02-24-2003 at 05:23:04       [Reply]  [No Email]
But I can't think of one,,
Ron/PA


Fawteen - Rats    Posted 02-24-2003 at 05:39:21       [Reply]  [No Email]
I had my hackles all up and was ready to do battle...


Greg VT    Posted 02-23-2003 at 17:29:50       [Reply]  [Send Email]
Duke wasn't doing the transplant for free.

They had every intention of billing the charity supporting the little girl for their services.

It seems to me that they have to be held responsible in some way.

It could have been somebody you or I know...



Cindi    Posted 02-23-2003 at 17:34:38       [Reply]  [No Email]
Not anybody I know unfortunatley. I don't know anyone who could afford a heart transplant or the health care coverage rates for a policy that would cover one. The last health policy we had for five years at a rate of 480.00 a month, never paid the first claim and fought every bill submitted that wasn't for a routine office visit.


Ayuh...    Posted 02-23-2003 at 16:34:40       [Reply]  [Send Email]
That's a tough one alright...

My Wife is in 'The Buisiness'...Healthcare that is...She says that for a transplant, there are supposed to be double checks on the blood type crossmatch at both ends...Supposed to be tested 4 times at the least in other words...For them to say that it was a 'Clerical Error', yah...well...DUH...

So who gets sued? Not the surgeons, certainly...They performed the first transplant correctly...Unfortunately, with the wrong blood type organs...Do you sue the hospital where the organs were removed from the donor?...The 'attending' hospital where the transplant was done?

Ayuh...A toughy...

PS...I do not care if they are immigrants, illegals, or came over on the Mayflower...I would not know who to 'blame' or sue...


ricky    Posted 02-23-2003 at 16:26:51       [Reply]  [No Email]
If I lived in a 3rd world country and my child needed medical attention elsewhere I would go.The odds of her living were slim to start with but this hospital did make a huge and tragic mistake.they are responsible for making sure they are doing things correctly and they didn't.I am dead set against frivolous lawsuits but I see this one coming.The biggest money winners are lawyers.25% is way to much.If they took a normal fee maybe the dollar amount wouldn't be so high.they want to get as much out of it that they can so push for huge settlements.That is what is wrong in my opinion


Lawyers get more like 40-50% plus expenses    Posted 02-23-2003 at 19:17:13       [Reply]  [No Email]
Probably one of this nation's BIGGEST problems---lawyers!


Cindi    Posted 02-23-2003 at 16:44:03       [Reply]  [No Email]
Right, might as well see them as commissioned salesman, the more they sell the more they make. It's disgusting. However Jessica's family was here illegally and should not therefore have a leg to stand on. Granted the hospital was grossly negligent, but I am an American citizen by birth and if I needed a heart transplant I would be shi* out of luck as I can't afford health insurance. If immigrants and illegal aliens want equal treatment then they need to go without health care as most of us do and just take their chances with the rest of us. No disrespect intended to whoever might tend to feel disrespected.


H. Andrew Merklethrope    Posted 02-23-2003 at 17:09:15       [Reply]  [No Email]
Yup, totally agree, Cindi.


JC4598    Posted 02-24-2003 at 10:00:03       [Reply]  [No Email]
I must agree with Cindy....I just pray that God has received this child in his loving hands !!!


Jack    Posted 02-24-2003 at 12:01:03       [Reply]  [No Email]
Hmm what about getting the doctor out of medicine,since if he/she overlooked this whats next? If we get all the incompetant people out maybe the malpractice insurance will be lower and there will not be a need for lawsuits. Get the problems at its source.


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