Children's Medical Center Sued Over Patient Death

McKinney couple claims hospital negligent in teen’s fall

A McKinney couple has filed a lawsuit against Children's Medical Center Dallas, claiming the hospital is to blame for the death of their son.

Willie Wilson, 17, a senior at Boyd High School, died at the Dallas hospital two years ago, just hours after he fell out of his bed at the hospital.

An autopsy by the Dallas County Medical Examiner listed his manner of death as “natural” and said it was caused by brain cancer.

But his parents claim he was killed by the fall, which they said the hospital should have prevented.

"He was such a good child, very good child,” said his mother, Frankie Wilson.

She said her son enjoyed playing football and wanted to become a television cameraman.

When Willie Wilson was diagnosed with a brain tumor, his parents said it didn't slow him down.

In October 2012, while he was in the car with his father, he had a seizure.

His father rushed him to the hospital.

"He could talk. He was telling me, he kept saying, 'Dad, I want to go home,'" said his father, Willie Wilson Sr.

Late that night, his mother said she decided to go home but was concerned his bed was too high. She said she talked to a nurse before she left.

"I asked them if they could lower the bed, restrain him or get a nurse in here with him," Frankie Wilson said. "She said, 'No, he'll be fine. I'm right here at the desk. I'll be watching him.'"

The next morning, right after dropping off her other children at school, Frankie Wilson got a call from a different nurse, telling her she needed to get back to the hospital right away, she said.

Over the phone, while she was driving, she said the nurse blurted out her son's vital signs.

"She just started counting me down, 'He's at 50. Oh, he's at 30. He's at 25.' I'm like, "What? He's gone!' I just went out, stopped in the middle of the road," she said.

She got her husband and raced to the hospital.

It was too late. Willie Wilson was already dead.

But doctors still allowed them to see their son, one last time.

"When I got there, I looked at him. I said, 'What is wrong with him? Why is his face swollen?'" Frankie Wilson said. "And then his eye had a cut under his eye, bruises under his eye. I looked in his mouth. His teeth were broken."

Only then, she said, did she learn her son had fallen on the concrete floor a few hours earlier.

"They didn't tell me how he fell," she said. "They just said he had fell on the floor face down."

The teen's medical records confirmed Willie Wilson was "found at approximatly 4:45 (a.m.) face down on the floor with bleeding from mouth, chipped teeth and (bruising) to left eye."

A little more than two hours later, at 7 a.m., he "was noted to be awake."

But soon, he had trouble breathing, his heart stopped and a doctor pronounced him dead at 7:45 a.m., exactly three hours after he was found on the floor, according to the medical document.

But did the fall cause his death or even contribute to it?

His medical records also said that before he fell, he had a "poor prognosis," an "altered mental state" and was "unable to follow commands."

An autopsy, conducted by the Dallas County Medical Examiner, listed his cause of death as cancer.
But his parents say they have no doubt what caused him to die.

"From my point of view, it was the fall," Frankie Wilson said.

The family’s attorney, Dominique Sims of the law firm Montgomery Sims, said Willie Wilson did not have to die.

"It's just the time frame," Sims said. "I mean, he falls and three hours later he's dead. I don't think cancer can act that quickly, especially if he was fine right before she [his mother] left."

The boy's mother said she hopes hospitals will learn from what happened.

“We don’t want this to happen to no one else’s child,” Frankie Wilson said.

Children’s Medical Center issued a statement Friday, saying it has an “unwavering commitment to the young patients we serve and to the families who trust us with their care.”

“While we cannot comment on the allegations made in the lawsuit, we wish to express our sorrow and condolences for this family’s loss,” the statement said.

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