A New Jersey family, whose six-year-old daughter died of the flu, is suing the hospital that discharged her, claiming the staff’s negligence led to her death.
Neveah Hernandez’s parents say they took her to Hoboken University Medical Center hospital in February 2018, where doctors failed to diagnose her and sent her home with a 104F fever.
She was taken to another hospital the next day, where she slipped into a coma and died three days later.
Stephanie Conteron and Gabriel, of North Bergen, filed the lawsuit on February 1 in Essex County Superior Court, reported The Jersey Journal.
The suit alleges staff were ‘negligent, careless, reckless, and unskillful in failing to properly diagnose and care for Decedent Nevaeh Hernandez’s influenza causing, ultimately, her untimely death.’
The Jersey Journal reports that Hoboken University Medical Center, CarePoint Health, and several medical staff are named as defendants and the parents have requested a jury trial.
According to the family’s attorney, Louis Zayas, Nevaeh, was sent home from her kindergarten class at Lincoln School after she complained of a headache on February 9, 2018.
She was taken to Hoboken University Medical Center and tested for strep and the flu, but both came back negative.
Hospital staff discharged her even though she had a fever of 104F.
Attorney Francisco Rodriguez, told The Jersey Journal that doctors failed to properly check her vitals, and that her heart rate, breathing rate and blood pressure weren’t taken.
He also says staff didn’t perform any bloodwork before Nevaeh was discharged.
‘What happened is both tragic and preventable,’ Rodriguez told the newspaper.
‘Had they rechecked her vital signs, they probably would have found some information that would have caused them to now dig deeper as to what [was]going on with her.’
The next day, after no signs of improvement, Nevaeh’s mother called 911 and she was taken to Hackensack University Hospital.
According to NBC New York, when Nevaeh arrived at the emergency room, her fever had spiked to 106F.
She was given an IV and put on oxygen. This time, a flu test came back positive and she was admitted to the Pediatric Intensive Care Unit,
Zayas told The Jersey Journal that it was there that the little girl suffered four seizures and fell into a coma, passing away on February 12.
Conteron said she watched doctors and nurses try to revive Nevaeh after she went into cardiac arrest.
‘I wanted her to go in peace. I didn’t want to see her like that,’ she told NBC New York.
‘For those three days in the hospital, she wasn’t moving, I knew she wasn’t there anymore. So I asked them to stop.’
Her father, Hernandez, was stationed in Germany at the time and although he got special leave, he was too late getting to the hospital.
Neveah’s parents say she was vaccinated against the flu, but they want to educate parents on other preventive measure such as washing your hands and covering your mouth if you cough or sneeze.
‘Every parent knows when their child is sick, when something is wrong,’ Conteron told NBC New York.
‘Go to the hospital. You won’t lose anything. Go get it checked out.’
The family also started The End-FLUenza Project, a non-profit that educates families about the flu. They said they miss their daughter’s smile and big heart.
‘I just miss being hugged by her, you know. I miss how much she loved me,’ her father, Hernandez, said.
‘Even if I was just going to the store, she would always want to come with me. If I had five minutes with her I would tell her how much I love her.’
No court dates have yet been set regarding the lawsuit.