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Liberia news

JFK, Rep. Forh Lock Horns

Final arguments are expected today, Tuesday, 18 October at the CivilLaw Court “A” at the Temple of Justice in the US$25m damages forwrongful death complaint filed by Montsrrrado County Rep. Dr. EdwardForh against State -run John F. Kennedy Medical Center over hisdaughter’s death.

Mr. Forh accused the State referral Hospital JFK of alleged acts ofnegligence that he said led to his daughter, Nakita D. Forh’s death inSeptember 2014 during the Ebola crisis. He told the court that Nakita was an asthma patient, and he wanted touse JFK’s nebulizer to revive her breath.

But the hospital denied any act of negligence, but rather shiftedblames on Mr. Forh for allegedly being the only culprit into the deathof the late Nakita, with arguments that he refused to take advice fromdoctors and nurses to face screening.

As per the courtroom practice, a jury panel which has been sitting onthe case as judges of facts may come out with verdict upondeliberating after the final argument today, Tuesday, 18 October.

Mr. Forh had testified that he took Nakita home in New Kru Town afterhis first attempt to utilize JFK’s nebulizer to revive her breathfailed on 26 September 2014, before returning there on 27 September2014.

Acting Assistant Health Minister for Curative Services DoctorCatherine Cooper, testifying as special witness for JFK, had told thecourt that during the Ebola crisis in Liberia, probable and suspectedEbola cases “should not have gone back to the community,” but thehealth facilities here “did not have restraining power as a police.”Witnesses including nurses and doctors who testified in defense of thehospital claimed that they tried to persuade Mr. Forh to go throughscreening processes enshrined in protocols meant to curtail Ebolaspread, but he allegedly resisted their advices and took his daughterhome on 26 September 2014.

Earlier, the Memorial Hospital Administrator at JFK Doctor Mary HowardNyanqueh testified that the late Nakita’s father – Rep. Forh, wasnegligible for his daughter’s death and not the hospital, claimingthat he refused to take advices.

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Witness Nyanqueh told the Court on Thursday, 6 October that shepersistently asked Rep. Forh for Nakita to be taken to a palaver hutat JFK where all patients were triaged, but refused and said hisdaughter had already died and all he needed was a wheel chair.

Ms. Nyanqueh said she had called two nurses from the trauma unit tocome with a stretcher in order to transfer the patient from the groundto the bed; but she saw the hospital’s unnamed security come from thegate with multiple bruises all over his hands, complaining to her thatthe patient’s (Nakita’s) relative ran into the gate and hit him (security).

She said doctors examined the late Nakita and found that she was notbreathing and pronounced dead. 

By Winston W. Parley

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