Florida Senate - 2010 (NP) SB 30 By Senator Dean 3-00116-10 201030__ 1 A bill to be entitled 2 An act for the relief of Lois H. Lacava by the Munroe 3 Regional Health System, Inc.; providing for an 4 appropriation to compensate her for injuries sustained 5 as a result of the negligence of the Munroe Regional 6 Medical Center; providing a limitation on the payment 7 of fees and costs; providing an effective date. 8 9 WHEREAS, on November 8, 2005, Lois H. Lacava was admitted 10 to the Munroe Regional Medical Center in Ocala, Florida, with an 11 admitted diagnosis of a malunion of the right hip which was 12 related to a prior fracture of the neck of the femur bone in her 13 leg, and 14 WHEREAS, on November 11, 2005, Ms. Lacava had a total right 15 hip arthroplasty along with hardware removal, and the following 16 day Dr. Mehra examined Ms. Lacava and noticed that her right leg 17 below the knee to her toes was cold to the touch and that her 18 toes were discolored, and 19 WHEREAS, Dr. Mehra brought these observations to the 20 attention of registered nurse Stacey Graham, ordered an arterial 21 Doppler test to be performed immediately, and advised the nurse 22 to continue to daily monitor Ms. Lacava’s production of red 23 blood cells and the effectiveness of a blood-thinning drug that 24 Ms. Lacava was prescribed, and 25 WHEREAS, an arterial Doppler test is a blood pressure test 26 that measures the lack of blood flow which may be caused by a 27 blockage in the arteries in the legs, and 28 WHEREAS, Dr. Mehra was not on call on the evening of 29 November 12, but the next morning he was paged by the nurse 30 taking care of Ms. Lacava and told that her venous Doppler test, 31 a test used to check the circulation in the large veins in the 32 legs, was negative for deep venous thrombosis, and 33 WHEREAS, upon further questioning, Dr. Mehra realized that 34 the arterial Doppler test had not been performed even though he 35 had ordered nurse Graham to conduct the test, and 36 WHEREAS, nurse Graham explained that she had spoken to the 37 Doppler technician who, upon hearing the clinical features and 38 history of the patient, had been reluctant to perform an 39 arterial Doppler test because the technician thought there was a 40 venous problem in Ms. Lacava’s leg, and 41 WHEREAS, a computer loading error required a venous Doppler 42 test to be performed before an arterial Doppler test and, for 43 unexplained reasons, the arterial Doppler test was never 44 performed, and 45 WHEREAS, even though the venous Doppler test did not reveal 46 any deep venous thrombosis, the lack of the arterial Doppler 47 test prevented a femoral artery occlusion from being timely 48 diagnosed, and 49 WHEREAS, Dr. Mehra ordered an evaluation for vascular 50 surgery by Dr. Swaminathan and another arterial Doppler test to 51 be preformed immediately, and 52 WHEREAS, Dr. Swaminathan evaluated Ms. Lacava and ordered 53 an angiogram, which revealed a blockage of the right femoral 54 artery and dislocation of the right hip prosthesis, and Ms. 55 Lacava was taken to the emergency operating room where Dr. Brill 56 performed a right total hip arthroplasty revision and Dr. 57 Swaminathan performed an excision of a blood clot of the right 58 femoral vein, with repair to the right femoral artery, and 59 WHEREAS, Dr. Swaminathan also removed a blockage in the 60 right tibial artery and cut the soft tissue component of the 61 connective tissue in order to relieve tension or pressure within 62 the right leg; however, Ms. Lacava ultimately experienced 63 irreversible necrosis of her right lower leg, which required 64 that her leg be amputated above the knee, and 65 WHEREAS, after her surgeries Ms. Lacava developed 66 tachycardia secondary to toxemia from the gangrene of her right 67 foot and lower leg, suffered a fracture of her superior pubic 68 ramus and femoral prosthesis, acquired a staphylococcus 69 infection, and developed diarrhea, and 70 WHEREAS, it was determined that Ms. Lacava was not a 71 suitable candidate for a prosthesis due to her medical 72 conditions that included an above-the-knee amputation of her 73 right leg and a dislocated prosthetic hip, and 74 WHEREAS, a consent final judgment was entered in favor of 75 Ms. Lacava against the Munroe Regional Health System, Inc., by 76 the Circuit Court of the Fifth Judicial Circuit in and for 77 Marion County for $450,000, wherein $200,000 was paid to Ms. 78 Lacava within 30 days after entry of the consent final judgment, 79 and the remaining balance of $250,000, pursuant to the agreement 80 by the parties, would be reported to the Florida Legislature for 81 its consideration as a claim bill, NOW, THEREFORE, 82 83 Be It Enacted by the Legislature of the State of Florida: 84 85 Section 1. The facts stated in the preamble to this act are 86 found and declared to be true. 87 Section 2. Munroe Regional Health System, Inc., is 88 authorized and directed to appropriate from funds not otherwise 89 appropriated and to draw a warrant in the sum of $250,000, 90 payable to Lois H. Lacava, as compensation for injuries and 91 damages sustained as a result of the negligence of Munroe 92 Regional Medical Center. 93 Section 3. The amount paid by Munroe Regional Health 94 System, Inc., pursuant to s. 768.28, Florida Statutes, and the 95 amount awarded under this act are intended to provide the sole 96 compensation for all present and future claims arising out of 97 the factual situation described in this act which resulted in 98 injury to Lois H. Lacava. The total amount paid for attorney’s 99 fees, lobbying fees, costs, and other similar expenses relating 100 to this claim may not exceed 25 percent of the total amount 101 awarded under this act. 102 Section 4. This act shall take effect upon becoming a law.