Virginia malpractice tort reform robs another family

Here is another sad story of how Virginia's version of "tort reform," the "Malpractice cap," has robbed a malpractice victim.

Remember, tort reform is nothing but the government initiation of force against the most seriously injured victims of medical malpractice.

Tort reform should be voluntary. If you like it, sign up your family for it.

This case is Carol Johnson v. Eleanor DeGuzman and Atwood Family Practice and was tried in the Cheseapake, Virginia Circuit Court.

The injury was a massive stroke and massive death of brain tissue.

The plaintiff was treated by the family practice physician (DeGuzman) for severe abdominal pain, fever and vomiting and nausea. The defendant allegedly failed to recognize that she had diverticulitis. The diverticulitis progressed into multiple abscesses and eventually lead to several surgeries, stroke, and massive brain damage.

According to the evidence at trial, the stroke left her with significant cognitive impairment and short-term memory loss. She was employed as a secretary.

Her medical bills totaled $167,000.00. Her lost wages based upon her life expectancy are $340,000.00.

The claim was that had she been treated appropriately she would have avoided all four of her surgeries and would not have suffered a stroke. The verdict was $2.5 million. This will be reduced to the cap on damages of $1.65 million thus robbing she and her family of $850,000.

The jury was not advised of the cap, thus wasting their time as they discussed damages in excess of $1,650,000.

Plaintiff's attorneys were Barry Taylor and Stephen Swain.