County Blamed in Death of Woman on E.R. Floor


A woman who died last May while writhing in pain on the floor of L.A.’s Martin Luther King-Harbor Hospital could have been saved if given proper treatment, according to a Los Angeles County report. The report detailing 43-year-old Edith Rodriquez’s death was first reported by the Los Angeles Times when it was accidentally made public for a short period of time in a court filing.

Prepared by an outside firm hired to look into the county’s liability, it stated that Rodriguez may have been saved had treatment been given to her early on. Rodriguez died due to a perforated bowel after she had been arrested on an outstanding warrant. The firm’s report goes on to state, “This is a case of medical negligence as to the medical treatment provided by medical staff at the facility.”

This entire story was made very public in the late spring when it was revealed that security cameras at the hospital showed a janitor mopping around Rodriquez as she lay on the floor in pain. Her death helped to bring about the closure of the hospital’s emergency room and inpatient care, due to a complete lack of a minimum standard of care.

Rodriguez’s boyfriend had accompanied her to the hospital and called 911 from a payphone, but no one would help them. He was offered $250,000 in a settlement from the county.

Rodriguez’s children are asking for $45 million from the county. This is one million for each minute Rodriguez was denied treatment.