Medical malpractice, negligence, and injury cases often take a long time or even years before they are resolved. Plaintiffs in such cases risk losing roughly one-third of the time because juries are often sympathetic to the difficulties faced by medical doctors and other medical professionals. Here is an example of a medical malpractice case in which the Younker Hyde Macfarlane law firm obtained a $2.9 million verdict against Exodus Healthcare on the 15th of February 2017.
Details of the case
This case was tried in the Third Judicial District Court, Salt Lake County. It’s titled Case No. 140902527, and Krista Wilcox vs. Exodus Healthcare Network, PLLC, were the plaintiff and defendant respectively. Keith Wilcox, aged 55, was an employee of the Utah Transit Authority (UTA). One night he developed chest pains that eventually spread from the chest and to the abdomen.
According to court documents, on November 6, 2011, Mr. Wilcox visited the Exodus Healthcare medical clinic. He was seen by a physician’s assistant (PA) who misdiagnosed his medical condition and determined that he was only suffering from constipation.
Mr. Wilcox never underwent any cardiac tests such as a chest x-ray or an EKG, and was subsequently not sent to the emergency room.
According to court documents, after more than a week of continued pain, Mr. Wilcox returned to Exodus Healthcare on November 15th and met with a different PA. This PA diagnosed him with abdominal pain and constipation, once again failing to diagnose the actual medical issue. For a second time, no cardiac tests were administered and just 4 days after his second visit to Exodus Healthcare, Mr. Wilcox died of aortic dissection.
Offer to settle the case and the jury’s decision
When the lawyers of Younker Hyde Macfarlane took the case to represent Krista Wilcox, the widow of the deceased, as well as Mr. Wilcox’s estate, they first offered to settle the lawsuit prior to trial for $1 million. However, Exodus Healthcare did not respond to the offer resulting in an 8-day civil trial.
The Jury ended up ruling that Mr. Wilcox was 30 percent at fault because he would have potentially visited the ER of his own violation while the Exodus Healthcare was 70 percent at fault for having breached the standard of care. It awarded $2,940,250.21 to Mrs. Wilcox and the heirs of the late Mr. Wilcox.