Attorneys Mark W. Tanner and James P. Faunes obtained a $2 million binding arbitration award on behalf of a child who died as a result of medical negligence. Approximately eight hours after he was sent home from the defendants’ office with a diagnosis of routine ear infection, the child became delirious and was rushed to the emergency room. There, he was strapped to a hospital bed and was unable to communicate with his parents, who looked on in horror. Soon thereafter, he suffered a fatal herniation of his brain stem, never regained consciousness. He was pronounced dead two days later. He was ten years old.
Tragically, the defendants had failed to recognize and treat the bacterial meningitis that ultimately killed him, at least in part because the child’s examination was completed without him ever saying a single word. Had a complete examination been performed, and an assessment of the child’s ability to answer questions lucidly been undertaken, it would have been apparent that his overall presentation demanded further evaluation in an emergency room setting. Attorneys Tanner and Faunes overcame substantial causation defenses, as well as an attempt to cast blame on the boy’s parents, in attaining the award on behalf of the family.