What do paramedics do? If you have never trained as a paramedic, and even if you have never been treated by them, you probably have some ideas about their basic duties. They transport people to the hospital. They stabilize them as much as possible until the patients can get to a fully equipped facility for treatment. They collect information about the patient, such as vital signs, that will help doctors make a diagnosis and begin appropriate treatment promptly. They assure the patients’ family that the patients will receive the treatment they need. In an ongoing lawsuit in Florida, the plaintiffs alleged that the paramedics who responded to their call for help did none of those things, and their negligence led to a young mother’s death. If you know someone who died after paramedics or other healthcare workers ignored signs of a serious problem, you may have grounds for a wrongful death lawsuit.
Details of the Crystle Galloway Case
In July 2018, Crystle Galloway, 30, gave birth to her son Jacob by Caesarean section. About a week later, she became seriously ill at home, suffering from a severe headache. Around 3:00 in the morning, Crystle’s 7-year-old daughter called her grandmother Nicole Black, Crystle’s mother, because she was worried about Crystle. Nicole called 911, and four first responders went to Crystle’s apartment; Nicole, who lived in the same apartment complex as her daughter, was present when they arrived. When Nicole arrived, Crystle was lying on the bathroom floor, drooling and semi-coherent state. The two deputies told the two medics about Crystle’s symptoms, namely severe headaches and sensitivity to light; Crystle vomited while the medics were present. The medics asked if Crystle had been drinking, and she and Nicole asserted that she had not.
Nicole asked the medics if they would take Crystle to the hospital; they said that Crystle was probably just drunk. They also told Nicole that she could drive Crystle to the hospital herself if she wanted to take her; they said she could not afford the ambulance. Nicole drove Crystle to the hospital, where she was diagnosed with a brain aneurysm; Crystle died several days later. Crystle suffered a seizure on the way to the hospital; if she had been in an ambulance instead of her mother’s car when it happened, the doctors may have been able to save her.
One of the first responders, Lt. Mike Morris, was fired; during an investigation about the incident, he admitted that he did not take Crystle’s vital signs. He said that he can assess a patient’s condition just by looking at them. Nicole filed a lawsuit against the Hillsborough County Board of County Commissioners, alleging nine counts of negligence, including failing to transport Crystle promptly to a properly equipped hospital, failure to assess her health condition, and refusing to provide treatment on the basis of race.
Contact an Attorney Today for Help
If a family member of yours died because of a healthcare worker’s intentional failure to provide treatment, you could be entitled to receive damages. Contact Palm Beach County wrongful death lawyers at Smith, Ball & Báez Injury Lawyers for a consultation.