Notice of Intent to File Action for Professional Negligence
(Code of Civil Procedure section 364)
Margaret Eve Miyasaki
To: Dr. Joseph Smith
San Francisco, California.
Please take notice that John Doe, of xxxx xxxxxx St., San Francisco, California, intends to file an action for professional negligence against you in the Superior Court of San Francisco City and County, unlimited division, on or after the 90th day following service of this Notice of Intent upon you.
The facts upon which the action will be based are as follows:
On the evening of xxxx, 2005, John Doe, a man in his late 50s, sought medical attention at the Saint Doc's Hospital's Emergency Department for symptoms of a stroke, including sudden numbness and weakness on one side of his body, trouble speaking, trouble seeing in both eyes, sudden trouble walking, dizziness, loss of balance and coordination, together with, sudden and severe headache with no known cause. The symptoms had begun earlier that evening. Mr. Doe informed Saint Doc's Hospital's nursing staff that he believed that he was having a stroke, and the staff had this printed on a medical bracelet that they placed on plaintiff's wrist.
Dr. Joseph Smith, the attending physician, failed to properly evaluate and screen Mr. Doe, perform assessments and tests necessary to detect that Mr. Doe was having a stroke, appropriately diagnose Mr. Doe's symptoms, and provide medical treatment to Mr. Doe Instead, Dr. Smith got about halfway through a perfunctory physical examination, said "This is ridiculous," abandoned his examination, left the examining room, went up to the individuals who had accompanied Mr. Doe to Saint Mary's, and asked them if Mr. Doe was trying to obtain "Vicodin", a synthetic narcotic. Dr. Smith's conduct suggests that he had arbitrarily concluded that Mr. Doe was a drug addict trying to get narcotics by malingering. Dr. Smith conducted no further examination and did not give Mr. Doe any medication. Mr. Doe believes that Dr. Smith directed Saint Doc's Hospital staff not to give Mr. Doe any medication, and in fact, they did not.
In fact, Mr. Doe was not a drug addict trying to obtain narcotics, but a family man experiencing the onset of a stroke. The stroke was later diagnosed at University Hospital and reported to Mr. Doe on or after xxxx, 2006,
The legal basis of the claim and damages are as follows:
The standard of medical care for patients presenting with a possible stroke within the first few hours of onset requires that a provider act immediately to determine and correctly diagnose whether the patient is having a stroke or not. If a stroke is correctly diagnosed within the first few hours following onset, it is possible to treat it immediately with appropriate drugs, such as a tissue plasminogen activator, and greatly lessen its severity and any residual disability caused by the stroke. The opportunity to do is lost, however, if such treatment is not provided for more than a few hours following onset of the stroke.
Dr. Smith's failure to even attempt, in good faith, to diagnose Mr. Doe's stroke was not merely negligent but a complete abandonment of his duties as a provider. Dr. Smith's conduct was reckless, intentional, callous, and a gross and disgraceful violation of the applicable standard of care.
As a direct result of Dr. Smith's failure to diagnose Mr. Doe's stroke within the first few hours of onset, Mr. Doe lost the opportunity to be treated by such drugs and experienced a more serious stroke with more serious and extensive residual disabilities, which include the following: (set forth both acute damages, pain, etc and residual disabilities.) The residual disabilities are expected to be permanent. Because of the willful nature of Dr. Smith's misconduct, Mr. Doe is also entitled to an award of punitive damages.
Dated: San Francisco, California, xxxday, xxxx, 2007.
PROOF OF SERVICE
(Code of Civil Procedure 1010 et seq)
I, the undersigned, depose and state: I reside or do business within the County of San Francisco. I am over eighteen years of age and not a party to this action. I am not a registered California process server. My business address is XXX XXXX, San Francisco, California 94110, tel (415) XXX-XXXX.
On ___________________ , I served the following documents:
Notice of Intent to File Action for Professional Negligence (Code of Civil Procedure section 364)
I served the following person pursuant to Code of Civil Procedure section 1013( )by placing a copy of the document in a sealed envelope, postage prepaid, certified, and addressed to the person at his work address and depositing the envelope, postage prepaid, into a mail box or other facility maintained by the United States Postal Service, addressed as follows:
Dr. xxxx Smith
San Francisco, California.
I declare under penalty of perjury that this is true and correct. Executed in San Francisco, California, on Thursday, xxxxxx, 2007.