Banner University Medical Center Tucson will likely appeal jury’s $12M verdict in medical error case

gavel and books
The $12 million award in the case against the University of Arizona Health Network, now Banner-University Medical Center Tucson, is the largest civil verdict reported in Arizona this year.

A jury awarded $12 million last week to an Arizona woman seriously injured by a medical error that occurred in 2013, but lawyers say the hospital will likely appeal the verdict.

The jury found in partial favor of Esmeralda O. Tripp, 46, of Tucson, who has been in a chronic vegetative state since she went to the emergency roomthen operated by the University of Arizona Health Networkcomplaining of pain and thin blood and was given the drug Profilnine, which her lawyers said caused her to suffer blood clots and a heart attack, which led to her brain being deprived of oxygen, the Arizona Daily Star reports.

RELATED: Disclosure of medical errors along with an apology may lead to fewer lawsuits

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Tripp was 20% at fault, according to the jury verdict, but the University of Arizona Health Network, now Banner-University Medical Center Tucson, was 80% at fault. The $12 million award is the largest civil verdict reported in Arizona this year, the newspaper reports.

RELATED: 1 in 5 Americans have experienced a medical error, new survey finds

But lawyers for the hospital told the Arizona Daily Star that the organization would likely appeal the verdict because the jury found Tripp was partially at fault. The defendants included the UA Health Network, the Arizona Board of Regents, University Physicians Healthcare, University Medical Center Corp. and the UA College of Medicine.

Although Banner Health was not named as a defendant in the case, it assumed the liabilities of the UA Health Network after a merger in 2015. Hospital lawyers claimed that clinicians treated Tripp appropriately for her medical condition, but Tripp didn’t provide accurate information about her medical history, according to the article.

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