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Lack of proper medical care cited in woman's wrongful death suit

The matter of immigration has sparked much controversy in recent years, may it be here in Atlanta, Georgia or on a federal level. But no matter your country of origin, a family member's death is the most difficult challenge to face -- especially if negligent circumstances were to blame for the person's passing.

For one undocumented woman who lost her husband, this is her unfortunate reality. Her husband suffered from a treatable heart condition called myocarditis, which causes heart muscles to inflame and become seriously damaged. U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement officials arrested and detained the woman's husband but failed to completely fulfill a physical exam on the man according to a $1 million wrongful death suit against the federal government.

ICE labeled the man in "good" health after his detention exam, but a physician did not check the results nor sign the report after the exam was completed. Maybe more egregious, ICE records show the man's x-rays came back with "abnormal" signs. Since no physicians or medical superiors checked the results of the exam, they did not catch that the man suffered from myocarditis and could not properly treat him. He died in federal custody just two months after his detention began.

Language from the lawsuit charges federal authorities with "failure to provide proper medical treatment" and goes on to say that ICE "breached the applicable standard of care and was negligent."

It may seem like a cold thought to have after the death of a family member, but pursuing legal action in the form of a wrongful death suit can get you the compensation or financial settlement needed to make it through this difficult time. You and your loved ones do not have to suffer silently, lacking any recourse. Consult an experienced attorney and find out how you can hold negligent parties accountable for your family member's wrongful death.

Source: Atlanta Journal Constitution, "Widow of ICE detainee files wrongful death lawsuit," Jeremy Redmon, Mar. 27, 2012

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