On October 14, 2016 a Connecticut jury in Bridgeport awarded $25 million dollars to a 25 year old woman who underwent a below the knee amputation in 2009 because her doctors failed to timely treat a blood clot. This unfortunate young lady went to an emergency room complaining of asthma and numbness and pain in her left leg. The emergency room physician consulted on the phone with a vascular surgeon after diagnostic testing on the patient's leg revealed a blood clot. The vascular surgeon recommended additional tests but advised that the 18 year old patient should be discharged from the emergency room and see him in his office 3 days later. The jury found that the young lady needed immediate treatment for the clot and the amputation could have been avoided if she had not been discharged.
Incredibly, the vascular surgeon argued that he had no physician-patient relationship with the young lady because he only spoke with the ER doctor on the phone. Neither the trial judge or the jury bought that argument. The jury found that vascular surgeon was 60% at fault with 40% fault attributable to the ER doctor and hospital.