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Read the case study, provide an analysis as to whether or not there was sufficient to hold the hospital liable for medical negligence and provide case precedent to support your conclusions.
NURSE ANESTHETIST: MEDICAL SUPERVISION REQUIRED
Mrs. LaCroix was admitted to the hospital’s women’s pavilion for the birth of her first child, Lawryn. She was admitted to the hospital under the care of Dr. Dulemba, her obstetrician. Prior to undergoing a cesarean section, LaCroix complained several times of breathing difficulty. When Dr. McGehee, the pediatrician, arrived, he noticed that LaCroix appeared to be in respiratory distress and heard her say, “I can’t breathe.” McGehee asked Nurse Blankenship, a certified registered nurse anesthetist (CRNA), if LaCroix was okay. She responded that LaCroix was just nervous. Mr. LaCroix claimed his wife whispered to him that she could not breathe. Mr. LaCroix then shouted, “She can’t breathe. Somebody please help my wife.” Blankenship asked that Mr. LaCroix be removed from the operating room because his wife was having what appeared to her to be a seizure.
Blankenship could not establish an airway. She told one of the nurses: “Get one of the anesthesiologists here now!” Dr. Green, who was in his car, was paged. Upon receiving the page, he immediately drove to the women’s pavilion, where Dulemba had already started the cesarean section. When Lawryn was delivered, she was not breathing, and McGehee had to resuscitate her. Meanwhile, Blankenship worked to establish an airway for LaCroix. The intubation was, however, an esophageal intubation. Dulemba stated that he thought that the intubation was esophageal. LaCroix’s blood pressure and pulse dropped, and she went into cardiac arrest. A physician and nurse from the hospital’s emergency department responded to a code for assistance. McGehee testified that the emergency department physician said that he did not know how to resuscitate pregnant women and left without providing any medical care. Dulemba and a nurse began cardiopulmonary resuscitation on LaCroix. McGehee, having finished treating Lawryn, took control of the code. LaCroix suffered irreversible brain damage.
Blankenship and Dr. Hafiz, the Denton Anesthesiology Associates (DAA), PA, anesthesiologist on call for the women’s pavilion on the day of LaCroix’s incident, settled with the LaCroixes by paying $500,000 and $750,000, respectively. The trial court entered a judgment against the hospital, awarding the LaCroixes approximately $8.8 million in damages.1
Was the evidence sufficient to hold the hospital liable for medical negligence under a theory of corporate liability?
APA FORMAT 7th EDITION