My husband, Alan Kroner, died on the floor of the ER at San Dimas Community Hospital after they failed to respond to classic heart symptoms (throwing up, sweaty, pale, tight chest, confused mental state) in a timely fashion. My opinion is that they killed him; a less involved person might say they robbed him of the chance to survive.
And now, they want my home.
I write today asking you to sign my petition requesting Tenet Healthcare Corporation (the hospital owners at that time) to lift their judgment lien on my house, which is in foreclosure. I qualify for a loan modification, but cannot sign it without paying their lien in full or having it lifted.
Meanwhile, my home will be auctioned by Chase Bank on August 8, 2012. Here’s the back story:
My name is Mary “Jamie” Class. On 2/08/2008, my husband Alan and I took my daughter Jackie to the hospital for an allergic reaction. Once there, Alan started to feel funny. He began sweating, threw up, and complained of a tight chest and sore jaw. He walked in circles, and couldn't fill out an intake form for himself.
Despite classic heart attack symptoms, he was given 2 short exams and returned to the EMPTY waiting room. After an hour or more, he was finally taken to a cubicle where staff administered skin rash medicine but not the heart medication ordered by the doctor.
Almost immediately, we heard a crash and horrible gurgling. I ran to Alan’s cubicle and found him struggling on the floor. Then he went still. I watched in shock, Jackie screaming on the other side of the curtain, while 2 nurses tried unsuccessfully to lift him off the floor. They called a security guard, and then paged another.
12 minutes with no treatment, even though a crash cart was 4 feet away. You die in 5 or 6 without oxygen.
These events are verified by the hospital's own medical record, as well as notes I wrote that same evening.
So, where does the lien come in?
I sued the hospital - not for personal gain, but to send a message that might force them to change patient evaluation processes and prevent this tragedy from happening to anyone else.
Unbelievably, their lawyer got portions of the medical record – A LEGAL DOCUMENT – dismissed as hearsay. Then he “corrected” other parts for the jury. This let the doctor and nurses say anything on the stand. And so, Tenet Healthcare Corporation dodged a bullet. They won.
You’d think they would just be grateful, but no. Now this enormous corporation, where the CEO’s yearly compensation package exceeds $1.08 million …… wants me to pay legal fees of only (to them) $23 thousand.
Except, I can’t. Between losing Alan and the crashed economy, I don’t have a dime to give them. I am a struggling single mother with a special needs daughter. My school job hours have been slashed due to education budget cuts, and we have no medical insurance to help with Jackie’s bills.
My home is in foreclosure, like so many families in this economy. I qualify for a loan modification that would save our home, but cannot accept it without paying off Tenet’s lien in one lump sum (which I can’t) or having it lifted…. Which Tenet refuses to do.
Will you please help by signing my petition?
Tell Tenet Healthcare Corporation to do the right thing, and lift their lien so I can save our home from foreclosure!
Thank you, Mary (Jamie) Class and daughter Jackie
On 2/08/2008, Jamie’s husband – Alan Kroner – died on the floor of your ER at San Dimas Community Hospital. She and her special needs daughter Jackie watched helplessly as Alan was shuffled back and forth between triage and the waiting room, despite exhibiting classic heart attack symptoms, before being admitted. At this point, Alan was given medicine for a skin rash rather than the heart medication ordered by the doctor.
Alan collapsed moments later. Jamie and Jackie then witnessed the unbelievable – Alan lay on the ground for 12 minutes while nurses and security guards struggled to lift him onto a gurney and begin treatment. A crash cart stood unused four feet away.
These events are all borne out by the hospital's own medical record, as well as notes Jamie wrote that evening on the advice of a friend.
I ask you: How does this tragedy reflect the Culture of Service and Commitment to Quality cited by Tenet’s website as the company’s core values?
In her shoes, would you trust the hospital involved? Or might you, like Jamie, seek punitive damages for wrongful death – not for personal gain, but hoping to send a message that might force a change in patient evaluation processes that would save others’ loved ones?
In court, your lawyer got portions of the medical record dismissed and “corrected” others. Some might say that in winning the case, Tenet dodged a bullet. Now you want her to pay the legal fees?
Mr. Fetter, you, especially, have a reputation in business circles of consistent personal integrity. Can you and the Board of Directors not find mercy in your heart for Mary “Jamie” Class and her daughter, Jackie? Does squeezing blood money from their family fall into line with Tenet’s Culture of Service or Commitment to Quality?
I am calling on you all to do the right thing, by lifting the judgment lien on her home.