Vendée: hospital ordered to pay € 280,000 after nosocomial infection

The Vendée Departmental Hospital Center was ordered to pay € 117,000 to the heirs of a patient who suffered from a nosocomial infection. (©JPY)

Monday February 22, 2021 Nantes administrative court condemned the Departmental hospital center (CHD) of la Vendée to pay € 117,000 to the heirs of a patient who is now deceased, to compensate him for the consequences of a nosocomial infection that he contracted during an operation.

Hospital of La Roche-sur-Yon and his insurer will also have to pay € 163,000 to Social Security for the health costs paid for his social security. Before the Nantes judges, the hospital said “not to contest its responsibility” but simply asked to “reduce to fairer proportions” the amounts claimed.

The now deceased patient

The victim, who had lodged the request during his lifetime, had initially assessed all of his damages at € 421,000. He finally died on August 4, 2017, five years after the disputed hospitalization, without a direct link being able to be made with his infection: it was then considered “consolidated” for three years.

The applicant in fact saw an orthopedic surgeon from the CHD for the first time on 3 November 2010, at the age of 61: the doctor diagnosed him with “post-traumatic tibio-talar arthritis”. A first operation of the ankle took place on March 3, 2011 at the CHD of La Roche-sur-Yon.

An infection “diagnosed with delay”

But complications quickly appeared, and required several more surgeries in the months that followed. After two of them, in May 2012, a “deep infection caused by the presence of germs” was revealed by bacteriological samples.

The patient therefore had to return to the operating room again, this time to have his left leg amputated, at the knee. An expert report in November 2014 concluded that there was a “direct and certain relationship” between the “surgical procedure” and the nosocomial infection of which he was a victim in the hospital.

« L’infection […] results from contamination by a bacillus-type skin germ, due to the placement of a closed resin boot following the operation […] of March 3, 2011 ”, explains the Nantes administrative court in its judgment. “This infection […], who was diagnosed late […], must be associated with the care that M. received at the Vendée departmental hospital center. »

“Vulnerability factors”

In its defense, the public hospital highlighted the previous “vulnerability factors” of his patient: he was suffering from diabetes and “overweight”.

But “the hospital […] does not dispute that in the absence of surgery, osteoarthritis […] from which M. suffered would only have led him to wear a rigid orthopedic shoe, ”objected the Nantes judges. “Thus, it does not follow from the instruction that, in the absence of nosocomial infection, this osteoarthritis could have led to an amputation of the leg. “

The nosocomial infection and the amputation that followed had an economic impact on the patient’s life, since his state of health “required a walk-in shower and a ramp to get into a wheelchair”.

GF (PressPepper)

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