Florida Senate - 2023                              (NP)    SB 16
       
       
        
       By Senator Gruters
       
       
       
       
       
       23-00079-23                                             202316__
    1                        A bill to be entitled                      
    2         An act for the relief of Jamiyah Mitchell, Latricia
    3         Mitchell, and Jerald Mitchell by the South Broward
    4         Hospital District; providing an appropriation to
    5         compensate Latricia Mitchell and Jerald Mitchell,
    6         individually and as legal guardians of Jamiyah
    7         Mitchell, for injuries and damages sustained as a
    8         result of the negligence of the South Broward Hospital
    9         District; providing a limitation on the payment of
   10         compensation and attorney fees; providing an effective
   11         date.
   12  
   13         WHEREAS, on October 8, 2008, Latricia Mitchell, who was
   14  pregnant, went to Memorial Hospital West, operated by the South
   15  Broward Hospital District, with pain, vaginal bleeding, and
   16  contractions, and
   17         WHEREAS, fetal monitoring tracings, which began at 4:33
   18  p.m., reflected a fetal tachycardia, minimal fetal heart rate
   19  variability, and the absence of accelerations, and
   20         WHEREAS, at approximately 5:54 p.m., Mrs. Mitchell was
   21  admitted to Memorial Hospital West, and
   22         WHEREAS, medical records reflect that, at 6:29 p.m.,
   23  continued fetal tachycardia, minimal fetal heart rate
   24  variability, the absence of accelerations, and variable
   25  decelerations were present, and
   26         WHEREAS, the minimal variability and absence of
   27  acceleration observations continued until approximately 8:44
   28  p.m., when Jamiyah Mitchell was finally delivered by caesarean
   29  section, and
   30         WHEREAS, the hospital’s records indicate that the caesarean
   31  section was performed due to a nonreassuring fetal heart rate,
   32  and
   33         WHEREAS, upon Jamiyah’s birth, there was a presence of
   34  meconium-stained fluids, a sign of fetal asphyxiation, and her
   35  Apgar score was 3 out of 10, and
   36         WHEREAS, Jamiyah suffered a left hemisphere stroke, began
   37  having seizures immediately at birth, and was cared for in the
   38  neonatal intensive care unit for 7 days after her birth for
   39  respiratory distress and seizure activity, and
   40         WHEREAS, Jamiyah was also diagnosed with fetal hypoxic
   41  ischemic encephalopathy, and magnetic resonance imaging of her
   42  brain at 4 days old showed objective findings of a stroke in the
   43  left hemisphere of the brain and a hemorrhage of the occipital
   44  horn of the right lateral ventricle, and
   45         WHEREAS, Jamiyah is now a teenager and while she is able to
   46  walk and function in most aspects of everyday life in a manner
   47  typical for an average girl her age, she suffers from attention
   48  deficit/hyperactivity disorder and has a learning disability,
   49  and
   50         WHEREAS, on or about October 10, 2013, Mrs. Mitchell and
   51  Jerald Mitchell, Mrs. Mitchell’s spouse and Jamiyah’s father,
   52  individually and on behalf of Jamiyah, filed a legal action in
   53  the Circuit Court of the 17th Judicial Circuit, in and for
   54  Broward County, Case No. 14-005044, against the South Broward
   55  Hospital District and other parties, alleging, in part,
   56  negligence of the district in failing to establish adequate
   57  protocols and procedures for the admission, monitoring,
   58  evaluation, testing, and referral to medical specialists of
   59  mothers presenting with risk factors for fetal distress,
   60  including timely caesarean section and appropriate oxygenation
   61  and ventilation, and
   62         WHEREAS, on or about July 3, 2019, Mr. and Mrs. Mitchell,
   63  individually and as legal guardians of Jamiyah, and the South
   64  Broward Hospital District entered into a settlement agreement,
   65  and
   66         WHEREAS, the settlement agreement provides for the payment
   67  of $200,000 by the South Broward Hospital District to Mr. and
   68  Mrs. Mitchell, individually and as legal guardians of Jamiyah,
   69  pursuant to the statutory limit under s. 768.28, Florida
   70  Statutes; the entry of a consent judgment in the amount of
   71  $995,000 which limits execution to $795,000; and the South
   72  Broward Hospital District’s agreement that it supports a claim
   73  bill in the amount of $795,000, NOW, THEREFORE,
   74  
   75  Be It Enacted by the Legislature of the State of Florida:
   76  
   77         Section 1. The facts stated in the preamble to this act are
   78  found and declared to be true.
   79         Section 2. The South Broward Hospital District is
   80  authorized and directed to appropriate from funds not otherwise
   81  encumbered and to draw a warrant in the sum of $795,000 payable
   82  to Latricia Mitchell and Jerald Mitchell, individually and as
   83  legal guardians of Jamiyah Mitchell, as compensation for
   84  injuries and damages sustained.
   85         Section 3. The amount paid by the South Broward Hospital
   86  District pursuant to s. 768.28, Florida Statutes, and the amount
   87  awarded under this act are intended to provide the sole
   88  compensation for all present and future claims arising out of
   89  the factual situation described in this act which resulted in
   90  injuries and damages to Jamiyah Mitchell, Latricia Mitchell, and
   91  Jerald Mitchell. The total amount paid for attorney fees
   92  relating to this claim may not exceed 25 percent of the amount
   93  awarded under this act.
   94         Section 4. This act shall take effect upon becoming a law.