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Riverside County, CA

In this negligence matter, the plaintiffs contended that the defendant was negligent for its employees’ failure to promptly respond to the plaintiff’s cardiac arrest and perform resuscitation. The plaintiff contended that the defendant’s employees also failed to timely call ________ for medical assistance. As a result, the plaintiff was deprived of oxygen and sustained severe brain damage rendering him minimally responsive. The defendant denied negligence and maintained that CPR was performed in a timely and appropriate manner by its employees.

The 39-year-old male plaintiff was a patron at the defendant’s fitness club on January 29, ________. As he was playing basketball, the plaintiff collapsed suffering a cardiac arrest as a result of ventricular fibrillation, an abnormal beating of the plaintiff’s heart. The plaintiffs contended that the defendant’s employees were responsible for tending to patrons who suffer cardiac episodes at the facility as part of their job responsibilities. The plaintiffs contended that there was a substantial delay before any of the defendant’s employees came to the basketball court at all and an even longer delay before any of them tended to the plaintiff.

The plaintiffs presented evidence that two and a-half minutes had passed before ________ was called and as long as five minutes before CPR was started. The plaintiffs also contended that the CPR was not being performed correctly. The plaintiffs maintained that a significant amount of time passed where the plaintiff was deprived oxygen. As a result, he sustained a severe brain injury which resulted in the plaintiff being minimally responsive. The plaintiff had been suffering from a regular but intermittent abnormal rhythm of the upper chamber of the heart. He was on an anti-arrhythmic drug at the time, but had no other episodes and no complaints prior to this episode of cardiac arrest.

The plaintiff was married to his wife with one child and another on the way at the time of the incident. The plaintiffs brought suit against the defendant fitness center alleging negligence. The plaintiff contended that the defendant was required to have an adequate emergency response system in place because it was foreseeable that patrons could suffer cardiac arrest while at the facility. The plaintiffs contended that the defendant’s failure to have a written procedure in place for such a medical emergency resulted in the delay in tending to the plaintiff after his cardiac arrest and delay in contacting ________ to secure medical attention for the plaintiff.

The defendant denied the allegations. The defendant contended that its employees performed CPR on the plaintiff in a timely and appropriate manner. It contended that its emergency response plan met all requirements and that all appropriate training was done either by the defendant or another company on the defendant’s behalf. The defendant further contended that the third party company had analyzed the defendant’s response to this incident and agreed that it had acted entirely appropriate and was not responsible for the plaintiff’s injuries.

The defendant argued that the plaintiff’s cardiologist was negligent for failing to appreciate and treat the plaintiff’s deteriorating cardiac condition. The defendant further argued that the plaintiff himself was negligent for excessive alcohol intake and alleged marijuana use, use of over-the-counter medications and continuing to exercise in the face of a deteriorating cardiac condition.The matter was tried over a period of 17 days. The jury deliberated for five and a-half hours and found in favor of the plaintiffs and against the defendant. The jury determined that the defendant was negligent and grossly negligent. The jury determined that the defendant was ________% liable for the plaintiff’s injuries and damages. The jury did not find any negligence on the part of the plaintiff or the plaintiff’s cardiologist. The jury awarded a total amount of $________ which consisted of $________ for past lost earnings; $________ for future lost earnings; $________ for past medical expenses as stipulated by the parties; $________ for future medical expenses; $________ for past non-economic losses including physical pain and suffering and $________ for future non-economic losses including physical pain and suffering. The jury also awarded the plaintiff wife the sum of $________ for past loss of household services; $________ for future loss of household services; $________ for past loss of consortium and $________ for future loss of consortium.

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