[Identities of the plaintiff and the defendant parties have been altered to uphold case confidentiality.]
Jane Doe was a 27-year old woman, married and with two young toddlers. In April 2015, Mrs. Doe was told she had cervical cancer and that it was terminal because it had metastasized throughout her abdomen and lymph nodes. Mrs. Doe and her husband, John Doe, desperately turned to David C. Rash, P.A. to find out why Mrs. Doe’s cervical cancer had not been discovered by her ob-gyn or by the numerous and routine yearly Pap smears and biopsies that she had over the past 5 years.
Through tireless investigation and turning over every metaphorical stone, Attorney David C. Rash and his team discovered that in 2012, Mrs. Doe had an abnormal Pap smear, and that as a result, her ob-gyn performed a colposcopy and sent the cervical brushing biopsy specimen to ABC Laboratory. David C. Rash and his team further determined that ABC Laboratory required Doctor Pathologist by contract to read 144 specimens per day by 6 pm, and to sign out all of these cases by 11 pm the same day. If this work load quota was not met, the contract required a reduction in Doctor Pathologist’s salary. As a result of this dangerous system failure where ABC Laboratory put profits over people’s safety, Doctor Pathologist misread and misinterpreted the biopsy stating it was benign when it was actually malignant. The negligent misdiagnosis was concealed for 3 years until David C. Rash and his team discovered it in their investigation tragically after Mrs. Doe was found to have a large cervical tumor with metastasis leading to her death a year later in 2016.
As a result of the discovered evidence proving the system failure that resulted in Mrs. Doe’s death, Laboratory and Doctor Pathologist were put on notice by David C. Rash, P.A. that Mr. Doe and his young boys intended to bring an action for medical malpractice against them. In response, and in accordance with the current bought and paid for special interest provisions of the Florida Medical Malpractice Act, the Laboratory and Doctor Pathologist requested arbitration with an admission of liability thereby allowing them to take advantage of the horrible and severe caps on damages, despite a recent ruling by the Florida Supreme Court and other appellate courts in Florida that the general damage caps in medical malpractice claims are unconstitutional. This arbitration scheme and its specific damage caps were not addressed in the recent rulings and have, in fact, been upheld by courts in Florida. Nevertheless, Attorney David C. Rash and his team believe that the constitutionality of the arbitration scheme and its damage caps will eventually be reviewed by the Florida Supreme Court. For now, however, healthcare providers like ABC Laboratory and Doctor Pathologist, are free to request arbitration and admit that their negligence caused a death like Jane Doe’s, but still be protected from accepting full responsibility due to the horrible and severe damage caps.
Despite these significant legal obstacles, David C. Rash and his team managed to settle the case for $2.5 million and despite the arbitration damage caps’ providing for a much smaller amount. Furthermore, the case was settled before a lawsuit was filed, which spared the Does from paying large litigation costs and increased attorneys’ fees.
In the end, John Doe and his two young children were able to find some closure, justice, and peace of mind in knowing that ABC Laboratory and Doctor Pathologist ultimately accepted full responsibility. With their financial future secured and stabilized, they are able to focus on recovering from the tragedy. David C. Rash, P.A. was honored to have had the chance to meet, know and represent this wonderful family. The firm wishes them the best, and will always be available if they ever need anything.
For more information about our law firm and our Florida medical malpractice attorney, contact us online or call 954.914.7116 today.