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Sibley Memorial Malpractice Claims

Sibley Memorial Hospital is a not-for-profit hospital and a member of Johns Hopkins Medicine located in Northwest Washington, D.C. Sibley offers medical, surgical, intensive care, obstetric, oncology, orthopedic and skilled nursing inpatient services as well as 24-hour Emergency Department. The Sibley campus has a new patient tower and is also home to the Johns Hopkins Kimmel Cancer Center, Grand Oaks (an assisted living residence), a medical building with physician offices as well as ambulatory surgery and imaging centers. This is an improving hospital that still gets its fair share of medical malpractice claims.

Currently, Sibley is equipped with 318 licensed beds, 2182 employees, 886 medical staffs and 591 resident nurses. In 2018, Sibley Hospital had 11,437 admissions, 39,760 emergency visits, 12,211 surgical procedures, and 3,921 births.

Sibley was founded in 1890 and since then the services of the hospital steadily expanded to meet the growing health needs of the community. Sibley participated in a large expansion program and completed a Master Facility Plan in 1999, adding 40,000 square feet of new space and 80,000 square feet or renovated space. This renovation included a new emergency department, new operating rooms, recovery suite, new procedures suite, and an expanded radiology department. In 2010, Sibley Hospital became affiliated with the Johns Hopkins Health System Corporation and became a members of JHU Medicine. There is no question that Hopkins is a great hospital and it has improved Sibley's brand and, seemingly, improved the quality of the hospital.

New Sibley

Johns Hopkins also means more money. In 2016, the New Sibley building, which includes the newly constructed Emergency Department, became fully public. The new building features 200 fully private patient rooms with visitor accommodations, a center for babies and families including 18 new private special care nursery bassinets, expanded medical oncology and inpatient oncology units, and an orthopedic unit with a dedicated rehabilitation technician, and integrated technology that is focused on improving the patient and visitor experience.

Key Services at Sibley

Some of the leading services and specialties at Sibley Memorial Hospital include:

  • Oncology: Sibley's oncology program is accredited as a Comprehensive Community Cancer Program by the American College of Surgeons Commission on Cancer. It is the home to the Johns Hopkins Kimmel Cancer Center in Washington.
  • Obstetrics: Sibley has a reputation as one of the area's preferred places to have a baby, delivering more than 3,500 babies a year. Sibley's Maternal Fetal Medicine Program furnishes a specialized expertise in controlling high-risk pregnancies.
  • Orthopedics: Sibley performs among the higher number of joint replacements in the area.
  • Emergency Services: Sibley's Emergency Department is ranked among the top 10 percent in the nation for their patient satisfaction. It was recognized as a "Top Vote Getter" in the Best Emergency Room category.
  • Other Specialty Services: The Sibley Senior Association offers a variety of wellness programs for people 50 years and older. Different programs include Club Memory, free health screenings, exercise and fitness programs and presentations by medical experts on important health issues. In addition, the Sibley Hospital offers the Sibley Sleep Center which is accredited by the American Academy of Sleep Medicine. It proves advanced technology for the diagnosis and treatment of sleep problems.

Although Sibley Memorial Hospital has continued to expand and modernize, medical malpractice suits are still prevalent in the hospital. With the large number of employees and medical staff, just one mistake can lead to severe or detrimental injury to a patient.

Medical Malpractice at Sibley Memorial Hospital

All big-city hospitals are regularly involved in defending medical malpractice lawsuits and Sibley Memorial is certainly no exception. Legitimate medical malpractice claims against hospitals like Sibley tend to get settled out of court much faster and more frequently than claims against individual doctors. The reason for this is that hospitals like Sibley Memorial are self-insured (i.e., they pay for their own malpractice claims) and they are often eager to settle valid claims quickly and quietly to avoid any negative attention which might damage the hospital's reputation or hurt them economically. By contrast, doctors have malpractice insurance. These insurers are less worried about an individual doctor's reputation and more concerned about keeping the payout as low as possible.

Jury Verdicts and Settlements

Below are past jury verdicts and settlements for medical malpractice suits against Sibley Memorial Hospital. Since hospitals like Sibley have a tendency to settle out of cases fairly quickly and frequently, there are not as many reported verdicts as you might expect:

  • Peary v Sibley Memorial (DC 2016) Undisclosed: in this birth injury case doctors and staff at Sibley Memorial Hospital were allegedly negligent in administering Pitocin and then failing to properly monitor mother afterwards. Electronic monitoring devices gave clear signs of fetal distress including non-reassuring heart rate and maternal fever. Doctors failed to immediately stop Pitocin and perform emergency C-Section and baby suffered brain injury from oxygen deprivation and was diagnosed with cerebral palsy. Sibley appears to have quickly settled out of the case for an undisclosed amount.
  • Donaldson, Kimberly v. Sibley Memorial Hospital (D.C. 2003) $3.5 million: plaintiff brings a medical malpractice suit against Sibley Memorial Hospital. Plaintiff suffered a uterine perforation during hysterectomy and post coital bleeding. The plaintiff was awarded 3,578,488.
  • Johns v. Sibley Memorial Hospital (D.C. 2001) $1.9 million: a 60 year-old male suffered multiple strictures of the bulbar urethra, impotence, sexual dysfunction with the inability to maintain an erection or ejaculate, ladder instability with chronic irritation, frequent urination and urinary control difficulties, penile discomfort and loss of feeling and chronic pain syndrome while in the care of the defendant hospital where he presented for cervical surgery and the treatment of urinary problems. Plaintiff contended that the defendant failed to properly insert a Foley catheter, used improper techniques while inserting the catheter, and failed to adequately remove the catheter. Plaintiff further stated that the defendant's negligence caused his injuries and that it failed to provide the proper standard of care. The defendant denied liability and disputed the plaintiff's injuries. Regardless, the jury awarded the plaintiff 1.9 million dollars.
  • Marsh v. Peterson; Sibley Memorial Hospital (D.C. 1992) $1 million: male plaintiff suffered a severe infection after undergoing hip replacement surgery. The plaintiff contended that the defendant failed to treat his wound in a timely manner and failed to prescribe the proper antibiotics necessary for recovery. The plaintiff contended the wound from surgery will not heal. The defendants argued that there was no infection and the failure of the wound to heal was due to other medical conditions.
  • Larry v. Kim and Sibley Memorial Hospital (D.C. 1982) $6 million: a 36 year old female suffered brain damage while undergoing abdominal surgery. The plaintiff claimed that a mistake on the part of the anesthesiologist during a surgery for an ovarian cyst caused the plaintiff to suffer cardiac arrest and be severely brain damaged. The plaintiff, the mother of two minor children was deemed legally incompetent as a result of her injuries. The verdict award was $6 million dollars.
Hire a Hospital Malpractice Attorney

If you have a potential claim against Sibley Memorial Hospital, or another hospital in the DC area, your first step in pursuing that claim should be to contact the medical malpractice attorneys at Miller & Zois. Call us at 800-553-5053 or submit an online contact form.

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