KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WATE) — The lawyer retained by Lisa Edwards’ family issued a statement about the internal investigation completed by Fort Sanders Regional Medical Center following Edwards’ death. The statement says she was discharged “to the curb for pickup like weekly trash.”
Jacob Litigation, who is representing Lisa Edwards’ family, released the statement on Wednesday. On Tuesday, the Fort Sanders Regional Medical Center released a statement saying Edwards’ medical treatment and discharge were “clinically appropriate” based on an internal investigation and reviews by state and federal regulatory bodies.
The release from Jacob Litigation says that Fort Sanders and Covenant Health investigating itself and finding that Edwards’ care was “clinically appropriate” has no merit.
“While “clinical guidelines” may evidence the standard of care, they do not dictate the standard of care,” the release states. “Rather, the standard of care sometimes requires medical providers to deviate from internal clinical guidelines that are often drafted with insurance coverage and litigation concerns in mind.”
The release goes on to state that “While Covenant Health’s internal clinical guidelines may have permitted the hospital’s medical providers to discharge Lisa Edwards to the curb for pickup like the weekly trash, and may have permitted the hospital’s security personnel to ignore Ms. Edwards pleas for emergency care, the standard of care did not.”
The latter section of the statement refers to how security officers were seen treating Edwards on Police body cam footage. In the video released by police, Edwards can be seen sitting at the edge of the hospital’s parking garage in a wheelchair telling Knoxville Police officers and hospital security officers that she cannot walk.
Following the dispute outside of Fort Sanders on February 5, Edwards was arrested and later was found unresponsive in the back of a Knoxville Police patrol cruiser. She was taken to Fort Sanders Regional Medical Center where she died the next day.
A full timeline of the events leading up to Lisa Edwards’ death and what has happened since is available here.
Fort Sanders also mentioned in their statement that several security officers who were involved are no longer working at any Covenant Health facility and that the in-depth review of the hospital’s security procedures and policies prompted it to evaluate the hospital’s security services contract.