FAMILY BLAMES LOCAL HOSPITAL EMERGENCY ROOM PHYSICIAN FOR DEATH OF 68 YEAR OLD WOMAN
Monroe County No. 2017-CV-6390 - Complaint available upon request
The family of a 68 year old woman from Effort, Pennsylvania has filed a lawsuit in the Monroe County Court of Common Pleas alleging that a local Hospital and Emergency Room physician caused the woman's untimely sepsis-related death by failing to properly diagnose and treat clear signs and symptoms of her brewing infection in violation of applicable standards of care.
Attorney Michelle Quinn
Attorney Kevin Quinn
In a Complaint filed on August 23, 2017 by their Kingston attorneys, Michelle M. Quinn and Kevin C. Quinn of Hourigan, Kluger & Quinn, P.C., Pamela Hendleman and Holly Hagenbuch, the surviving daughters of Janice Gombert, allege that on the afternoon of September 5, 2015 their mother received Emergency Room treatment at Pocono Medical Center by Dr. John R. Schleicher, Jr. after experiencing a sudden onset of chills, body aches and vomiting shortly after eating lunch that day. At the time, Mrs. Gombert was employed by Brookmont Healthcare Center in Effort, Pa.
The Complaint alleges that over the course of five hours in the Emergency Room, Mrs. Gombert was diagnosed with an infection and persistently displayed signs and symptoms which should have been recognized as sepsis, including a fever that spiked as high as 104 degrees, chills, body aches, a low white blood count, low platelet levels and abnormal blood pressure and heart rate levels that did not improve even after the administration of intravenous fluids and pain medications. Despite the clear protocols that are required for the screening, diagnosis and early treatment of sepsis in such cases, the suit alleges that Dr. Schleicher and the Emergency Room nursing staff at Pocono Medical Center failed to administer any antibiotics in the Emergency Room or check Mrs. Gombert's lactate levels.
Instead, just before 10:00 p.m. that evening Mrs. Gombert, who could barely walk on her own at the time, was discharged from the Hospital by Dr. Schleicher with a diagnosis of a urinary tract infection and handed a prescription for what the Plaintiffs claim was the wrong type of antibiotic which could not even be filled at the time because all of the area pharmacies were closed by the late hour of her discharge. The suit alleges that at approximately 4:51 a.m. on the morning of September 6, 2015, some 7 hours after Mrs. Gombert's discharge, the Emergency Room staff was notified that Mrs. Gombert's lab results were positive for E.-coli bacteria, although it was not until approximately 10:00 a.m. that morning, several additional hours later, that Mrs. Gombert was notified of these positive blood cultures and instructed to the return to the Emergency Room. The suit contends that by the time her family was able to get her back to the Emergency Room, Mrs. Gombert was already in full septic shock and multi-system failure. On September 14, 2015, after several agonizing days, Mrs. Gombert died.
Also named as Defendants are Team Health, Inc.; Emergency Physician Associates, Inc.; Emergency Physician Associates of Pennsylvania, P.C.; Emergency Physician Associates, LLC; Pocono Medical Center; Pocono Health System; Lehigh Valley Hospital, Inc.; and Lehigh Valley Health Network, all claimed to be acting in their own right and/or through various entities and agents. The Complaint includes Wrongful Death and Survival Claims, as well as claims for Negligent Infliction of Emotion Distress suffered by Ms. Hendleman and Ms. Hagenbuch, and seeks both compensatory and punitive damages against all Defendants.