EMMC Responds to Jury Verdict in Haskell Case


(Bangor, Maine) – On Friday, March 28, a Hancock County jury came to a decision after a week-long trial of a civil lawsuit filed by the Estate of Thomas Haskell against Eastern Maine Medical Center and two of its heart surgeons. The jury returned a verdict in favor of Dr. Francis DiPierro and Eastern Maine Medical Center, and returned a verdict against Dr. Felix Hernandez in favor of the Estate.

In the specific case, the estate of a former patient sued EMMC claiming the patient developed post-operative bleeding after bypass surgery and did not receive enough blood replacement in a timely manner, resulting in multisystem organ failure and death.

During the trial, EMMC’s Blood Management Program protocols were reviewed. The jury was informed that the use of blood and blood products has changed over the course of time. Several experts testified on behalf of EMMC, stating the care provided was appropriate and that the prescribed treatment was successful in stopping the patient’s bleeding at that time. Experts testified that the cause of death was adult respiratory distress likely caused by pneumonia and sepsis, not due to any alleged lack of blood.

“The staff at Eastern Maine Medical Center extends our condolences to the Haskell family,” says Deborah Carey Johnson, RN, EMMC president and CEO. “We want to improve the health of every patient who comes through our doors. In this instance, although the outcome was not what we had hoped for, we’re confident the doctors and staff provided appropriate care.”