Melissa Rivers And Family Settle Joan Rivers Wrongful Death Lawsuit

Melissa Rivers’ malpractice lawsuit on behalf of her mother, Joan Rivers, has been settled. After her death as a result of mistakes during surgery, daughter Melissa Rivers filed suit in order to hold the doctors responsible who made the surgical errors that caused Joan Rivers’ death in September, 2014.

According to EOnline, Melissa Rivers filed the medical malpractice suit in 2015 so that no other family would have to live through the pain and loss that she has since the death of her mother, icon Joan Rivers. Joan Rivers, who was 81 at the time of her death, was having surgery outside a hospital when she stopped breathing during surgery, and could not be resuscitated. Rivers was at the clinic to have throat surgery, and suffered brain damage according to the medical examiner from a lack of oxygen.

Melissa Rivers released a statement confirming the settlement of the suit on behalf of Joan Rivers’ estate.

“In accepting this settlement, I am able to put the legal aspects of my mother’s death behind me and ensure that those culpable for her death have accepted responsibility for their actions quickly and without equivocation.”

Melissa Rivers wants fans to know that her motivation in pursuing the lawsuit was to prevent other families from having to suffer through the pain that she, her son Cooper, and of course her mother, Joan Rivers, suffered. Rivers, in particular, has hopes that the level of care in outpatient medical facilities will be improved, as it is thought that Joan Rivers would have been better served in an actual hospital.

Vanity Fair is reporting that Joan Rivers died as a result of medical errors at Yorkville Endoscopy, but a settlement was reached before all of the claims against the doctors were addressed, including a lack of professionalism, and the suggestion that unauthorized procedures were done at Yorkville Endoscopy.

Some of the accusations against the doctors included claims that “doctors performed unauthorized medical procedures, snapped a selfie with the comedian, and failed to act as her vital signs deteriorated.” Reportedly, the anesthesiologist was concerned about Joan Rivers’ vital signs, and was told that she was being paranoid before it was clear that Rivers was in full medical decline.

Yorkville Endoscopy also put out a statement after the settlement, and wished their best to the Rivers family.

“Our thoughts and prayers continue to go out to the Rivers family. We remain committed to providing quality, compassionate healthcare services that meet the needs of our patients, their families and the community.”

The New York Times says that though a dollar amount was not shared in the medical malpractice case on behalf of Joan Rivers, it is thought that Melissa Rivers received a settlement in the range of a several million dollars. The business entity Yorkville Endoscopy was sued by the Rivers family, and also listed in the suit were Dr. Gwen Korovin, an ear, nose and throat specialist, Dr. Renuka Bankulla, the main anesthesiologist, and Dr. Lawrence Cohen, the clinic’s medical director, who stepped down after the death of Joan Rivers.

Lawyers for the Rivers family, Jeffrey Bloom and Ben Rubinowitz, said that they did not want to reveal the dollar amount in the suit because Melissa Rivers did not file for financial gain, but to bring attention to medical care, and the changes that need to happen to bring outpatient centers to the level of hospitals when it comes to medical errors.

Melissa Rivers’ attorneys said that profit can never be more important than patient care when it comes to medical outpatient facilities, and concern for the health and care of patients has to be of the utmost importance.

Joan Rivers was 81 at the time of her death, and is survived by her daughter Melissa Rivers, and her grandson, Cooper Endicott.

Do you think that outpatient surgical centers are now safer as a result of lawsuits like that filed by the family of Joan Rivers?

[Photo by Taylor Hill/Getty Images]

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