Florida Senate - 2018                              (NP)    SB 42
       By Senator Rodriguez
       37-00065-18                                             201842__
    1                        A bill to be entitled                      
    2         An act for the relief of Vonshelle Brothers on behalf
    3         of her daughter Iyonna Hughey; providing an
    4         appropriation to compensate Iyonna Hughey for injuries
    5         and damages sustained as a result of the alleged
    6         negligence of the Brevard County Health Department, an
    7         agency of the Department of Health; providing that
    8         certain payments and the appropriation satisfy all
    9         present and future claims related to the alleged
   10         negligent acts; providing a limitation on the payment
   11         of fees and costs; providing an effective date.
   13         WHEREAS, on March 16, 2010, Vonshelle Brothers visited a
   14  location of the Brevard County Health Department for her initial
   15  prenatal visit, during which a complete obstetrical and
   16  gynecological exam was conducted, including a Pap smear, and
   17         WHEREAS, the lab results of the exam were reported to be
   18  within normal limits with the exception of the Pap smear, which
   19  had tested negative for intraepithelial lesion or malignancy,
   20  but showed cellular changes consistent with herpes simplex virus
   21  and bacterial vaginosis, and
   22         WHEREAS, despite the results of the Pap smear, the Brevard
   23  County Health Department did not report the results to Vonshelle
   24  Brothers, and
   25         WHEREAS, Vonshelle Brothers continued to receive treatment
   26  from the Brevard County Health Department through the duration
   27  of her pregnancy until the birth of her daughter, Iyonna Hughey,
   28  on October 14, 2010, at the Wuesthoff Medical Center, and both
   29  were discharged from the hospital 2 days later in good
   30  condition, and
   31         WHEREAS, on November 1, 2010, Vonshelle Brothers brought
   32  Iyonna to the emergency room at Wuesthoff Medical Center, citing
   33  Iyonna’s lack of eating, weak condition, and fever, and
   34         WHEREAS, a lumbar puncture was performed and cerebral
   35  spinal fluid was collected which initially suggested that Iyonna
   36  had meningitis, which prompted her transfer to the Arnold Palmer
   37  Hospital for Children for further evaluation and management, and
   38         WHEREAS, on November 3, 2010, the final results of the
   39  cerebral spinal fluid collection were reported, and the fluid
   40  had tested positive for herpes simplex type 2, and
   41         WHEREAS, as a result of her diagnosis, Iyonna continues to
   42  experience significant developmental delay and neurologic
   43  impairment related to the herpes meningoencephalitis and has
   44  required continued treatment, including physical therapy,
   45  occupational and speech therapy, and neurologic and
   46  ophthalmologic care, and
   47         WHEREAS, Iyonna’s condition requires her to be under the
   48  constant care and supervision of Vonshelle Brothers, and
   49         WHEREAS, the Brevard County Health Department had a duty to
   50  provide a reasonable level of care to Vonshelle Brothers and
   51  Iyonna, but that duty was allegedly breached by the department’s
   52  failure to disclose the presence of the herpes simplex virus in
   53  Vonshelle Brothers and to order proper treatment of the virus,
   54  which eventually resulted in Iyonna’s medical condition, and
   55         WHEREAS, in June 2016, a final order was entered approving
   56  a settlement in the sum of $3.2 million between Vonshelle
   57  Brothers, individually and as parent and legal guardian of
   58  Iyonna, and the Brevard County Health Department to settle all
   59  claims arising out of the factual situation described in this
   60  act, and
   61         WHEREAS, the Department of Health has paid $200,000 to
   62  Vonshelle Brothers under the statutory limits of liability set
   63  forth in s. 768.28, Florida Statutes, and the parties have
   64  agreed to a reduced settlement in the amount of $1 million, NOW,
   67  Be It Enacted by the Legislature of the State of Florida:
   69         Section 1. The facts stated in the preamble to this act are
   70  found and declared to be true.
   71         Section 2. The sum of $1 million is appropriated from the
   72  General Revenue Fund to the Department of Health for the
   73  Supplemental Care Trust for the Benefit of Iyonna Hughey or
   74  other special needs trust for the exclusive use and benefit of
   75  Iyonna Hughey.
   76         Section 3. The Chief Financial Officer is directed to draw
   77  a warrant in favor of the Supplemental Care Trust for the
   78  Benefit of Iyonna Hughey or other special needs trust for the
   79  exclusive use and benefit of Iyonna Hughey in the sum of $1
   80  million upon funds of the Department of Health in the State
   81  Treasury and to pay the same out of such funds in the State
   82  Treasury.
   83         Section 4. The amount paid by the Department of Health
   84  pursuant to s. 768.28, Florida Statutes, and the amount awarded
   85  under this act are intended to provide the sole compensation for
   86  all present and future claims arising out of the factual
   87  situation described in this act which resulted in injuries and
   88  damages to Vonshelle Brothers and Iyonna Hughey. Of the amount
   89  awarded under this act, the total amount paid for attorney fees
   90  may not exceed $100,000, the total amount paid for lobbying fees
   91  may not exceed $50,000, and the total amount paid for costs and
   92  other similar expenses relating to this claim may not exceed
   93  $2,214.
   94         Section 5. This act shall take effect upon becoming a law.