The Washington Post this week ran a lengthy article about the growing problem of "alarm fatigue" in the nation's hospitals.
Alarm fatigue refers to the desensitizing of medical personal to the cacophony of bells and alarms in the hospital setting.
To illustrate the growing hazard, The Post used as its lead example the tragic medical malpractice death of 17-year-old Mariah Edwards, which was successfully litigated by Ross Feller Casey, LLP founding partner Joel J. Feller.
Mariah died last year after a routine tonsillectomy at an outpatient surgery center. Nurses there had given her a strong narcotic and failed to monitor her as her respiratory condition worsened.
Through discovery and depositions in the medical malpractice lawsuit, Feller was able to establish that the monitors used on Mariah had been muted.
The case was settled late last year for $6 million and went on to become the largest reported medical malpractice settlement in Pennsylvania for 2012.