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Multiple amputee awarded $17.9 million

  |   March 5, 2012 at 7:01 PM
NEW YORK, March 5 (UPI) -- A New York City mother whose hands and feet were amputated during a medical disaster won a $17.9 million settlement from the city and a hospital, officials say.

The settlement ended a three-year legal battle for Tabitha Mullings, who lives in New York's Brooklyn borough, the New York Daily News reported Monday.

Mullings' lawsuit began in September 2008 when she went to the Brooklyn Hospital Center emergency room where she was told she had kidney stones and was sent her home with pain killers.

The next day, she complained of agonizing pain and numbness, but city paramedics refused to take her back to the hospital. Mullings' fiance took her to the Fort Greene hospital the next day, but a sepsis infection had spread through her entire body.

Mullings fell into a coma and gangrene spread to her extremities. When she awoke, both her hands and her feet had been amputated and she was legally blind in one eye.

While still in the hospital, she filed a lawsuit.

The city and hospital said it decided to settle because a jury could be easily swayed by Mullings' "profound" injuries.

"Given the extent of the injuries and the uncertainties of the trial process, we believe that settlement was in the best interest of all parties," city lawyer Sheila Rossi said.

Brooklyn Hospital and two of its doctors will pay more than $9.4 million and the city will pay $8.5 million to Mullings, who said she is happy with the outcome of the lawsuit.

"Now that the lawsuit is behind me, I look forward to going on with my life and caring for my children the best I can," she said. "I pray what happens to me never happens to anyone again."

© 2012 United Press International, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Any reproduction, republication, redistribution and/or modification of any UPI content is expressly prohibited without UPI's prior written consent.
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