RES IPSA LOQUITUR
Latin for “the thing speaks for itself”; a doctrine of law that one is presumed
to be negligent if he/she/it had exclusive control of whatever caused the injury
even though there is no specific evidence of an act of negligence, and without
negligence the accident would not have happened.
(Source: Res ipsa loquitur – Legal Dictionary | Law.com)
• 09 August 2017 “Lawsuits allege… <http://www.fayobserver.com/
• 10 August 2017 “Man died after being mistreated at Cape Fear Valley Hospital, lawsuit says <http://wncn.com/2017/08/10/
• 19 August 1017 “Sons speak out about father’s care at Cape Fear Valley [Gulag] <http://www.fayobserver.com/
David and Dana Bryant have filed a lawsuit alleging that negligent care by Cape Fear Valley Medical Center contributed to their father’s death.
Dana Bryant wasn’t overly concerned when one of the women who cared for his father called on Oct. 10  to say he had fallen in his Roseboro home and was having trouble standing.
Bryant said he went to the home, discovered that his father had broken his leg, and arranged for an ambulance to take him to Cape Fear Valley Medical Center in Fayetteville.
David Edward Bryant Sr., who had earned a Purple Heart and a Bronze Star for service in the Vietnam War, entered the hospital as a 67-year-old who suffered from renal failure, diabetes and dementia.
He died 118 days later, ravaged by bed sores, gangrene and malnutrition, according to a lawsuit filed Aug. 9 against Cape Fear Valley Health System on behalf of his two sons, Dana and David Bryant Jr.
Within those 118 days, the sons say, the hospital amputated Bryant’s leg, caused fist-sized bed sores to develop on his backside, refused requests to transfer him to another hospital and hid him from his family for more than a week after moving him to another room.
The Bryants blame their father’s death on a systemwide failure by Cape Fear Valley to provide proper care.
“Just simple, not doing your job,” Dana Bryant said in explaining what he thinks caused his father’s death. “Just simple, not caring.”
Officials with Cape Fear Valley Health System have declined to discuss the case, saying it can’t because of federal privacy laws. The hospital system has said previously that its 7,000 employees “are committed to providing exceptional and compassionate care to all patients.” [<http://www.dallasnews.com/
That leaves only photos of Bryant’s wounds, a few court documents, the sons’ account of what happened and a lawsuit that says an elderly veteran died because of a hospital’s negligence.
David Bryant Sr. was born on Halloween in 1949 in Dillon, South Carolina. At age 2, his family moved to Sampson County, where Bryant would go on to attended Clear Run High School. After graduation in 1968, he moved to Washington, D.C., was drafted into the Army and became a member of the 101st Airborne Division.
The Sampson Independent newspaper published a two-part feature on Bryant in February 2003, shortly after he received 10 commendations — including the Bronze Star, the Purple Heart and his honorable discharge papers — while serving his country from 1969 to 1971.
Bryant spent nine months in Vietnam as an infantry soldier. During that time, the newspaper reported, his platoon became overrun by Viet Cong who had infiltrated their camp. Bryant said he became engaged in hand-to-hand combat and was injured, probably by the butt of a gun. «But Bryant told a reporter that he got the best of the Viet Cong soldier: He strangled him.»
That was just one of the harrowing experiences Bryant related to the newspaper. He described other firefights, including one in which he watched his company commander get sliced in two by a helicopter propeller after the chopper was hit by a grenade.
Bryant’s one-year tour of Vietnam was cut short when he received an emergency leave to attend his father-in-law’s funeral. Instead of returning to the war, Bryant was assigned to the 58th Military Police at Fort Bragg until his discharge in September 1971.
Eventually, Bryant settled near Roseboro <http://www.rootsweb.ancestry.
“When he said something he said something,” Dana Bryant said. “He didn’t want talking just to be talking.”
Both sons said their father taught them how to walk tall. Both men — David is 46; Dana, 41 — now own small trucking companies. David hauls chickens, while Dana hauls cars.
“He taught us what it was to be a man,” Dana Bryant said. “How to provide and do what you’ve got to do.”
But the elder Bryant’s days in Vietnam never escaped him. His sons said he often had nightmares of the time he spent there. In modern-day parlance, they said, their father suffered from post-traumatic stress.
Shortly after his arrival at Cape Fear Valley on Oct. 10,  surgeons began work to repair David Bryant Sr.’s fractured femur. Bryant came out of surgery fine, got fitted with a typical leg brace and was sent to the hospital’s rehabilitation wing.
But he balked when it came time to do physical therapy, complaining that his leg hurt too much to even try, his sons said. At some point, family members began to notice a stench but couldn’t determine where it was coming from.
When his father continued to complain about the pain, Dana Bryant said, he asked hospital staff to take the brace off to ensure that his father’s leg was healing properly. When they refused, he said, he decided to take it off himself.
Dana Bryant said he found that the brace had rubbed against his father’s leg so badly that «he could see bone». According to the lawsuit, the Stage IV abrasion, sometimes called pressure ulcers or bed sores, became infected because of Cape Fear’s further inattention.
“Once it started there was no going back,” Dana Bryant said. “It was so deep.”
A month after David Bryant Sr. entered the hospital, surgeons removed his leg.
“He did not deserve to be amputated because there was no reason for it,” Dana Bryant said.
The amputation turned out to be only the beginning of his father’s nightmare.
Dana and David Bryant couldn’t remember how long their father spent in intensive care. They described the period as a blur. But it was during that time, they said, that their father began developing bed sores that grew into the size of a fist. They showed pictures of the bed sores and the fecal matter that surrounded them. Hospital staff had failed to equip their father with a colostomy bag, they said.
Horrified, the brothers said they suggested the hospital try medical-grade maggots to clean out the dead tissue and remove bacteria from the bed sores, a procedure accepted by the Federal Drug Administration since 2004. When the hospital refused, Dana Bryant said, he took it upon himself to do it.
With their father’s condition continuing to deteriorate, the sons said they repeatedly asked that he be transferred to another hospital. They said they suggested a Veterans Affairs Medical Center, or hospitals in Greenville or Goldsboro. Instead, Cape Fear Valley insisted that their father be placed in «its own nursing center, they said.
By then, David and Dana Bryant said, their father spent much of his time curled up in the fetal position. He hardly ate and became depressed, they said.
The day after Dana Bryant tried administering the maggots to treat his father’s bed sores, he said, his aunt made her daily visit to her brother’s room only to find another patient in his bed. Dana Bryant said staff members wouldn’t tell her where to find him, or to even allay her fears that he may have died.
David and Dana Bryant said they went to the hospital that Friday, too, only to be told by security that their father was not listed on the patient registry.
“We can’t find him. He is not in our system,” David Bryant said he was told.
The brothers said they were also told to talk to the hospital’s legal staff on Monday.
Instead, they said, they went to Fayetteville police [<http://www.zerohedge.com/
“Basically, we couldn’t do nothing,” Dana Bryant said.
Frantic, they began to call lawyers in Fayetteville, eventually finding Michael Porter, the only one to answer his phone after 5 o’clock on a Friday evening.
Porter said he told the brothers that one of two things could be happening: Either their father had died, or «the hospital was trying to have him declared legally incompetent». The latter, Porter said, proved to be true.
“Basically,” Dana Bryant said, “what they did was «they kidnapped my dad and they imprisoned him».”
They did so, he and his brother believe, «in an attempt to hide their father’s negligent care».
The hospital disagrees. Transcripts of a court hearing to determine who should have legal guardianship say the elder Bryant was transferred to another room to ensure his safety after Dana Bryant put maggots in his wounds without the hospital’s permission.
For eight days, Dana and David Bryant said, the hospital refused to reveal their father’s whereabouts.
During much of that time, Porter said, he went to the Cumberland County Clerk of Court’s PROBATE Office «twice a day» checking on whether the Hospital System had scheduled a competency hearing for the elder Bryant [he went only “twice a day?” obviously that implies more than 1 Day, for how many days?]
Eventually, Porter said, he found what he was looking for after a clerk checked «a nontraditional court calendar» for him.
According to the lawsuit, «Cape Fear had retained the law firm of Michael Boose, a member of its board of trustees and the Cumberland County Board of Commissioners». The calendar did not list Bryant’s name. It showed only that a hearing involving Cape Fear Valley had been scheduled for Jan. 26,  Porter said.
The lawsuit says «the hospital system also continued to hide Bryant from his family while it tried to get the Cumberland County Department of Social Services appointed as Bryant’s legal guardian without telling family members». The agency investigated the facts of the case and [with Porter now playing ball, suddenly] refused to get involved, according to the lawsuit [in addition, note that – a Mr. “Dave” Bryant, executive vice president and Chief Financial Officer of Klaussner Home Furnishing <http://www.klaussner.com> (and a Dr. Thomas Lawrence, a radiologist with GREENSBORO Radiology), were now appointed as two new Cumberland County Hospital System board of director members <http://www.courier-tribune.
A court document filed by Cape Fear Valley says Bryant was taken off its patient registry — a process referred to as an opt-out — “to ensure safety.”
About 1 a.m. the day their father was moved to another room, the document says, Dana Bryant came to the hospital, appeared to be tampering with his father’s dressing, and told a nurse to come back later. When nurses returned, they noticed that the elder Bryant’s dressing had been changed and found maggots in his wound, the document says.
“He inserted those into the wound with no medical license, no authorization, no authorization period to do so,” Cape Fear Valley lawyer Jordan Stewart [Joseph Duane Gilliam, Jr. Lawyer Jordan Garrett Stewart <http://www.attorneys.org/
Dana and David Bryant both had power of attorney for their father, but hospital officials had been primarily dealing with Dana Bryant, a transcript of the hearing shows. Porter asked the [Hospital’s Probate] court to appoint David Bryant as his father’s guardian [Why do that if Dana and David Bryant both had Power Of Attorney for their “now incapacitated” father? Did they also have an additional, separate, and supplemental attorney certified Cover Letter & Medical Power Of Attorney like I did?]
“They have kept this man from his family for a week or more. That is not lawful,” Porter argued.
[Now with Porter & Company involved] the court [suddenly reversed course and] denied Cape Fear’s efforts to have Bryant declared incompetent, the lawsuit says.
«During the hearing, “Cape Fear failed to offer even a modicum of actual medical opinion or evidence,” the lawsuit says. “Further, Cape Fear’s testifying witnesses swore under oath that the incompetency proceeding was not an effort to protect Mr. Bryant from his family, whom Cape Fear did not see as a threat to his safety.”»
The court’s decision enabled Bryant to be reunited with his family. [It required a Court decision!] Upon seeing them, the lawsuit says, Bryant asked, “Son, where have you been?” According to the lawsuit, the hospital never told Bryant why his family had stopped visiting him. [Did they also tell him daily that no one in the world cared about him or loved him and that his own family were liars? That’s what they constantly told me.]
The same day [of that particular court hearing], Dana Bryant said, he hired a private ambulance to take his father to Duke University Hospital in Durham.
Once there, he said, Duke officials thought the family was responsible for the improper care of his father. Among his many other health problems, the lawsuit says, Bryant entered Duke with “severe protein calorie malnutrition.”
“Everybody’s eyes blazed like there ain’t no way somebody came from another hospital with this kind of care,” Dana Bryant said.
Bryant’s sons said that after settling in at Duke, their father appeared to get better. He began eating on his own again and flirting with the nurses, they said.
But [he had been isolated and abused in the Hospital Gulag too long and the severe damage was done] the improvements would prove temporary. Bryant died on Feb. 5, 10 days after entering Duke.
Dana Bryant said he and other family members were at his side when he passed.
David and Dana Bryant said they agreed to talk publicly about their father’s treatment in hopes that it will lead to significant and substantial changes in Cape Fear Valley’s medical care.
Meanwhile, Porter and his law partner, Walt Tippett of Raleigh, continue to fight for the Bryants in court. They filed two initial lawsuits on Aug. 9, and amended one of them last week. The amended lawsuit says Cape Fear Valley submitted invoices totaling more than $400,000 for Bryant’s care.]
That lawsuit also increases claims of relief from three to eight. Each claim, including wrongful withholding of medical records, breach of contract and malicious prosecution, seeks more than $25,000 in damages. The lawyers also are seeking a court order to have Cape Fear Valley turn over all of its medical records pertaining to the case.
On Aug. 10, Superior Court Judge Jeffrey Foster reserved a ruling on the lawyers’ request for a temporary restraining order so he can review the hospital’s complete medical records and those pertaining to the hospital taking Bryant’s name off its patient registry.
Hiding Bryant from his family was among the more egregious things Cape Fear Valley did, Dana Bryant said.
“Imagine them taking a child of yours and you not knowing,” he said. <http://medicalkidnap.com/
It’s the same as somebody being kidnapped, basically. That’s a bad feeling. You don’t know whether they are dead or alive, or what kind of condition they are in.
It’s something you think you will see on TV. You say this can’t even happen, this is a movie. But nah, this is real life. I’m amazed. I’m scared that this could happen. This could happen to anyone.”