Janabeth Taylor is a friend and an invaluable resource. She helped me stay on top of the Texas Nurse Whistleblower case that went to trial in February 2010. She is a passionate patient advocate. I encourage you to get to know her. I will post more about her when I have time. In the meantime, I encourage Janabeth and her friends to add to this page. http://www.attorneysmedicalservices.com/
Why do I do what I do?
by Janabeth Taylor
My friends ask, my family asks...my former students ask....and at times I ask myself this question.. Well...what seems to be years ago..but in reality was 1989 ...I saw an ad in the paper..an attorney wanted a nurse to work for him.. and I thought to myself..why?
I went to the interview, got a part time job ...would go when my teaching day ended, or my clinical day was over.....and translate medical records, look up information, copy out of books for hours.. I was drawn to the clients....they were like the patients at the hospital...people who needed help..and who were hurting.
The job was like being part nurse, part private investigator...part librarian..and the biggest kick I got was when I found that "one" item the attorneys were looking for to help their client...wow it's still a rush for me...
Anyway we had a case, 16 year old boy, all American type with a wonderful family..killed by a surgeon, anesthesiologist and nurse after a simple outpatient adenoidectomy...a throat pack was left down...he sucked it in..the endotracheal tube used in an attempt to open his airway jammed it
down further...the circulating nurse did not do a count of ALL packs after surgery ..and the surgeon was distracted by his girlfriend who was observing surgery and got nauseated.... After the boy died..the surgeon busted his way into a surgery suite, demanded a flexible bronchoscope, fetched the throat pack.. and threw it in the trash....the head OR nurse was so appalled by all of this (this was a HUGE deal to her...as dead people are not taken to the OR) she fetched the pack out of the trash, locked it up..and sent it to the medical examiner with the body....she "got em"
The insurance company for the doctor would not settle..they blamed everyone else....every deposition of those involved was a round robin of accusation....... None of this had to happen..if only the people who were given the responsibility for this young man's care had done their job... the series of checks and balances put into place to prevent such a terrible outcome would have prevented this tragedy...
Every time I think of this boy's mother I put myself in her place....there would be no amount of money...no amount of punishment that would be enough to compensate for the loss of my only son.... That said...every day there are parents who have children injured due to the negligence of those they trust, there are patients who pay a high price for healthcare..and get little for their money...and even worse..end up in a condition that was caused because a healthcare provider was not doing their job.....then have to fight to get the "wrong" .."righted" ...
Now if a mechanic does not do his job properly..I can take my car back, exercise my warranty..etc... If a teacher does not do her job properly...there are remedies to make up to the student the difference...If the chef does not cook that meal to order...we can send it back... What is the one profession where getting it just right the first time is of primary importance? healthcare...
Seldom are there second chances....and opportunities to "send the patient back" .... So..why do I do what I do? ...I could make twice the money practicing in healthcare...and have benefits too..
So why? Because I find such satisfaction..on a daily basis...helping YOU help your clients....there is always something new to learn, always someone else to help..it's challenging, rewarding..and I can capture the feeling of really making a difference..
I wish there was someway to make the average "Joe" on the street understand..attorneys who represent plaintiffs are not greedy money grabbing arrogant self serving individuals..but invest their own time, own money, ....up front....to help those people who have been wronged by the medical system....that every time they take on a new client, it's a gamble as to whether compensation will be obtained ......this setting of caps on awards, helps no one really but the insurance company...helps them correct a declining profit margin.....maybe if they could hear more stories about people who are treated like this young man was...they would better understand...the reason I do and you do...what we do......
Janabeth F. Taylor, R.N., R.N.C. has a degree in
Nursing from Oklahoma State University and Litigation Paralegal
Certificate from the University of Oklahoma Law Center.
She was a nursing instructor for ten years. She has been a
medical legal consultant since 1990.
Ms. Taylor is currently President/Owner of
Attorney's Medical Services, Inc.
in Corpus Christi, TX.
In 2002 she was named the
Association of Trial Lawyers of America's
Paralegal of the Year.
She provides litigation support for attorneys
across the United States and specializes
in case reviews and Internet