Kaiser Misdiagnosed Infection 4 Times, Woman's Family Says
7-8-2013 17:48:00

MODESTO, Calif. (CN) – A deceased woman’s family claims Kaiser’s emergency room misdiagnosed her and sent her home three times in one week. On her fourth visit “she complained of pain so bad that she wanted to die,” so Kaiser put her on involuntary suicide watch, the family says. She died the next day with fatal sepsis.

In a wrongful death complaint filed in Stanislaus County Superior Court, Nicole Dias' husband, father and brother say she visited her non-Kaiser primary care physician on Jan. 14 “for diagnosis and treatment of an illness, including but not limited to an infection.” He instructed her to go to Kaiser’s emergency room “for further and immediate assessment and medical treatment,” and she went that day, according to the complaint.

On both Jan. 14 and 15, the family’s complaint states, emergency room staff “misdiagnosed her condition, and sent her home without properly treating her illness.” During her third visit, on Jan. 17, a doctor “gave Nicole Dias a few pain pills, misdiagnosed her with sciatica, and sent her home,” the complaint continues. Finally, on her fourth trip to the emergency room, Jan. 18, “she complained of pain so bad that she wanted to die,” and doctors “misdiagnosed her condition, and placed her on an involuntary suicide watch,” the complaint says.

“Several hours later,” the family says, Kaiser’s staff “finally realized that they had misdiagnosed Nicole Dias’ condition. By that time, Nicole’s illness had evolved into, among other things, a fatal sepsis and a systemic infection,” and she died the next day.

Plaintiffs are represented by Joseph P. Brent of Brent, Fiol & Nolan in San Francisco. cv684614