This unfortunate incident dates back to 1998, when Shaniah’s mother, Queen Seriah Azulla Dabrio, took Shaniah to the Unviversity of Miami’s medical school’s pediatric unit for a checkup. Shaniah had her spleen removed when she was a newborn, and as a result a medical assistant injected Shaniah with a special vaccination designed to protect against infection for people without spleens. Unfortunately, the vaccine had expired five months earlier.
Eight months after receiving the injection Shaniah became seriously ill and was rushed to Jackson Memorial Hospital in Miami. She had a bacterial infection throughout her body that caused blood clots to form in her arms and legs. The infection led to gangrene in her limbs, and doctors amputated her arms and legs above the joints.
Incredibly enough the lawsuit was filed 10 years ago, and The University of Miami Hospital denied responsibility even though the expired vaccine led to the very infection it was to protect against
UM’s attorneys, Christopher Knight of Miami and John Hall of Atlanta, argued that Shaniah would have contracted her illness despite being given the expired vaccine because her mother failed to give Shaniah enough medication to help stave off the infection.
The Miami-Dade jury returned a $12.6 Million verdict against the University of Miami’s Miller School of Medicine. However, the amount Shaniah will receive will be cut almost in half because jurors deemed her mother was 40 percent at fault.
It is estimated that more than 1.5 million Americans are injured every year by drug errors in hospitals, nursing homes and doctor’s offices.
A 2006 study concluded a hospitalized patient is subject to at least one medication error per day.
The administration of expired medications or wrong medications is below the standard of care and clearly Medical Malpractice. Yet in this case, The University of Miami denied responsibility for more than 10 years.
As a Miami Medical Malpractice Lawyer, it is not uncommon to work on cases for years at at time and to advance significant money for costs on behalf of my clients.
As a brief aside the Florida Legislature granted sovereign immunity to The University of Miami Medical School last year, and essentially capped damages for Medical Malpractice claims at $200,000.