LA County agrees to settles medical malpractice suit for $890,000

A man who claimed he received shoddy treatment for a spinal injury at Los Angeles County-USC Medical Center will receive $890,000 under a settlement approved Tuesday.

The county Board of Supervisors voted to approve the settlement of a medical malpractice lawsuit brought by Robert Maurer.

Maurer, 35, now lives in a nursing facility and can walk only a short distance with the aid of a walker, according to a county counsel memo.

The memo said the failure of physicians to “fully evaluate and treat” Maurer before discharging him “fell below the standard of care, and contributed to Mr. Maurer’s current neurological status.”

Maurer was injured in January 2004 when his bicycle collided with a car. He was unable to move his legs and complained of weakness in his hands.

He was taken to the hospital but doctors never asked for a neurology or neurosurgery consultation, according to the June memo from the county counsel. He was later released without being given any medication or clinic appointments.

Nine days later, Maurer went to a hospital in Phoenix, where doctors found he had suffered a Cervical spinal cord compression. He underwent neck surgery to ease the compression.

The Associated Press

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