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Court Lets Dead Inmate's Mom Sue for Alleged Doctor Failures

The mother of a man who died while in prison has the green light to pursue a lawsuit against the doctors she accuses of failing her son. She cannot include the state in the suit or the state’s Department of Corrections, however.

This case of apparent wrongful death and alleged failure to diagnose did not occur in Missouri, but it easily could have. With that in mind we are opting to share it with you.

The main claim of the lawsuit, filed in New Jersey, is that 38-year-old inmate Eli Endl died needlessly because doctors neglected to provide an appropriate standard of care when he was in distress. And when they did finally examine him, they allegedly misdiagnosed several deadly conditions as nothing more than bronchitis.

According to details of the suit, Endl died on March 24, 2012. While in prison, his health care needs were supposed to be handled by doctors of the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey under a contract with the state.

The suit claims that on March 21, Endl had complained to a nurse that he was suffering from severe chest pains. She reportedly gave him some Tylenol, but nothing more. Two days later, Endl went to the infirmary for coughing and wheezing. He died the day after that.

Endl’s mother is seeking compensation, arguing that doctors were negligent in not following up on her son’s March 21 complaints. She further says that that when he did report to the infirmary, doctors missed that he had congestive heart failure, a respiratory infection that had him coughing up blood and kidney stone troubles.

Such failures may not happen very often. But as this story shows, they do occur. Those who suffer as a result of negligence have a right to seek compensation and should consult with an attorney to fully examine options.

Source: Courthouse News, “Inmate’s Heart Failure May Cost N.J. Doctors,” Rose Bouboushian, March 27, 2014