A Baker City woman has filed a $5.2 million lawsuit in Baker County Circuit Court on behalf of her daughter against Saint Alphonsus Medical Center, orthopedic surgeon Dr. Eric T. Sandefur and Veronica Crowder, a physician assistant who worked with Sandefur at the Baker City hospital.
In her claim, Chrissy Ann Martin alleges that Sandefur and Crowder were negligent in treating a serious fracture to Avery’s right arm at the elbow.
Martin has requested a jury trial.
Mark Snider, Saint Alphonsus spokesman in Boise, declined to comment on pending litigation. The Herald called Sandefur’s office but did not receive a comment.
The lawsuit states that because of the defendants’ negligence, Avery, who was 6 when she was hurt in a fall on May 5, 2018, is disabled by limited use of her right arm.
According to the complaint, Chrissy Martin took her daughter to the emergency department where it was determined that Avery had fractured her right elbow. She was referred to Sandefur for orthopedic care.
Avery’s arm was placed in a cast and her care was followed by Crowder. The lawsuit notes that Crowder is not a physician and further claims that she “does not have the skill, training, or experience to perform surgical reduction of fractures.”
The lawsuit alleges that surgery was “the only appropriate management” for her daughter’s serious arm injury.
“Nonoperative management would predictably, and in fact did, result in clinical deformation, loss of function, and disability,” the complaint states.
Martin further alleges that Sandefur was negligent in not recognizing Crowder’s “inappropriate management” of her daughter’s injury and should have intervened.
Sandefur also is accused of failing to discuss options with Chrissy Martin that could have restored her daughter’s use of her arm.
When her daughter’s condition failed to improve, Martin sought treatment for Avery from Dr. Jason Robison, a pediatric orthopedic surgeon in Boise.
According to the complaint, Robison “concluded that the care provided by the Defendants was negligent” and operated on Avery’s fractured right elbow.
Martin seeks $2.7 million in noneconomic damages against the defendants for her daughter’s “pain, suffering, anxiety, emotional distress, scarring, hospitalization, surgical intervention, disfigurement, loss of self-esteem and permanent limitation of motion, together with interference of all aspects of her daily life.”
The lawsuit also seeks $2.5 million in economic damages for what Martin claims is her daughter’s sustained “loss of future earning capacity and inability to compete in the labor market” as a result of the defendants’ alleged negligence.
She also seeks $35,000 in current medical expenses, which she says are continuing, and has included “all reasonable and necessary medical expenses paid by her” in her claim.
Martin is represented by the Portland law firm of Huegli Fraser.
The complaint was filed Monday in Baker County Circuit Court. Judge Matt Shirtcliff has recused himself from the case because of a conflict.