Lewis Blackman and Helen Haskell Discuss MUSC’s Lewis Blackman Tragedie

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In this video, Lewis Blackman and Helen Haskell discuss the MUSC tragedy and how they have improved patient care. Both of them also discuss the controversial Epidural narcotics. MUSC doctors are under fire for allowing such dangerous practices. The victims blamed the doctor who administered them. After the shooting, the hospital suspended the use of epidural narcotics. They have been criticised for a number of errors, including a failure to adequately protect the public and the staff.

MUSC
In the fall of 2000, 15-year-old Lewis Blackman was diagnosed with pectus excavatum, a congenital chest deformity. While his parents were supportive of his decision to undergo surgery at MUSC, insurance coverage delayed his last appointment with the surgeons. Furthermore, the surgeons’ office had no preoperative evaluation requirements. MUSC’s Lewis Blackman team did. Their work was based on medical records from Lewis’s case and a review of Lewis’s record.

MUSC doctors
At age fifteen, Lewis W. Blackman enrolled at the Medical University of South Carolina. He was treated at MUSC’s Children’s Hospital at Charleston. With the support of his parents, Lewis underwent a specialized surgery. In the months following the surgery, he developed a deathly pallor, cold sweat, dark circles under his eyes and a hard abdomen. Lewis later died of a perforated ulcer. His parents and other medical staff at the MUSC-affiliated hospital worked with the family to get him the best treatment possible.

Epidural narcotics
Helen sought medical advice from the hospital’s insurer and sent a copy of Lewis’ records to Dr. Gregg Korbon, an anesthesiologist and teacher who has performed thousands of operations. Fortunately for Lewis’ parents, he did not die from his medication. The hospital and insurer paid the family $950,000, which is close to the maximum payout of a state-operated hospital in South Carolina. They plan to use the money to improve patient safety.

Bleeding ulcer
In November 2000, the medical staff at the Medical University of South Carolina (MUSC) failed to respond appropriately to a complication associated with a perforated ulcer in Lewis Blackman, who died within 30 hours. Lewis was a talented, healthy 15-year-old boy. Despite his deteriorating condition, he underwent an elective surgical procedure, and the staff ignored his family’s repeated requests to see a physician. A subsequent mistake in medication caused Lewis Blackman to perforate his intestines and die.

Surgery unit at MUSC
Dr. Lewis Blackman was an anesthesiologist at MUSC’s Surgery unit, where he died of an aortic dissection on April 14, 2004. Lewis was a highly trained surgeon with extensive training in emergency medicine. In addition to performing a variety of procedures, he taught medical students and participated in thousands of operations. His family and friends sought out the insurer of the hospital and requested that his medical record be released. MUSC’s insurance company agreed to pay the family and estate $950,000, almost the maximum payout for a state-operated hospital in South Carolina. Lewis’ family plans to use the money for patient safety programs.

Nurses
The case of Lewis Blackman and nurses highlights the inadequacies of nursing care. It highlights the importance of proper communication between nurses and doctors, handover between nurse and patient, and a focus on quality, patient-centered care. The failure of this system to provide quality patient care results in the tragic death of an otherwise healthy 15-year-old. Nurses should be empowered to prevent errors and ensure the safety of patients.

Professionalism
Helen Haskell, the mother of Lewis Blackman, testified about her son’s death at a teaching hospital. She feels like her son was killed because the medical staff was not professional enough. Lewis was in the hospital for a minimally invasive surgery and was given Ketorolac for pain. Unfortunately, this was the wrong medication for him and he died. This tragic case shows the importance of professionalism and communication between physicians and healthcare professionals.

Education
Dedicated to patient safety, the Lewis Blackman Leadership Award honors students and residents who exhibit outstanding leadership in the field of healthcare. Lewis Blackman was an excellent student who died at a teaching hospital, and his mother dedicated her life to patient safety through education. The award will be presented to an active health professional student or resident who exhibits exemplary leadership in patient safety. This award will be announced each fall. To learn more about how to become a nominated student or resident, click here.

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