cosmetic surgery, 23-year coma and death
Posted in the Chattanooga Forum
#1 Nov 1, 2012
Antonio Meño, the young man who was left in a coma as a result of medical negligence while undergoing cosmetic surgery and whose parents camped out with him for 522 days in protest in front of the Ministry of Justice, has died.
The first court ruling in 1993 ordered the health insurance company to pay 172 million pesetas (more than a million euros) in compensation to Antonio Meño. However this ruling was overturned by both the High Court in Madrid (in 2000) and the Supreme Court (in 2008) when it was decided that there had been no medical negligence.
The case took an unexpected turn when in 2009 Ignacio Frade, a member of the medical team who had operated on Antonio Meño, came across the camp by the ministry building, found out about the family's situation and offered to testify about what really happened.
In November 2010, the Supreme Court allowed the family's appeal and overturned the previous sentences, after hearing that the anesthetist responsible for caring for Meño, left the operating theatre during the operation, during which time Frade witnessed Meño displaying cardiac irregularities.
After signing the agreement, the victim's mother, Juana Ortega, tearfully admitted that they had reached a "miserable" agreement which made her feel "very bad, practically humiliated", but that she did not have "the strength to carry on" faced with the prospect of another ten-year legal battle. She was deeply upset that the anaesthetist, Francisco Gonzalez, had got off scot free!
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