Family sues hospital, doctor and Pfizer for woman's death

Marilyn Tennissen May 24, 2007, 5:00am

Michael L. Phifer

On May 18, 2005, Renita Rochelle Hadnot, 47, entered a hospital operated by Christus Health Southeast Texas Inc. under the care of Dr. Usman Zafar of Jasper.

The suit does not specify the nature of Hadnot's illness or the specific treatment she received, but the original petition says that during course of treatment the defendants "engaged in several acts and omissions constituting negligence."

On May 21, Hadnot's mother, Annie Lois Hadnot, filed a wrongful death medical malpractice suit in Jefferson County District Court. The suit names Christus Jasper Memorial Hospital, Christus Hospital St. Elizabeth, Dr. Zafar and Pfizer defendants.

The suit alleges Zafar and the hospital failed to properly diagnose Hadnot, did not properly treat her or monitor her condition. The defendants are negligent "in failing to properly and timely act to avoid the injuries to and death of Renita Rochelle Hadnot."

Although the original petition does not mention what type of drug or medical procedure was involved, it also names Pfizer, doing business as Pharmacia, in the suit as engaging in negligence for failing to properly design and manufacture the "product in question."

Pfizer, the petition says, presented the product to the public and the deceased that the product was "safe and fit for the purposes intended when used under ordinary conditions and in an ordinary manner."

"The deceased relied upon these express and/or implied warranties and suffered injuries, damages and death as a result of the breach of such warranties."

In addition, the suit says that the "product in question" was defective, which made it "unreasonably dangerous for the use of the general public and the deceased."

As a result, "plaintiff invokes the doctrine of strict liability in tort."

Pfizer also could have chosen alternate designs for the "product in question" that would have been safer and "would have prevented or significantly reduced the risk of injury to the plaintiff," the plaintiff claims.

Annie Lois Hadnot, on behalf of herself and Hadnot's children, is seeking damages for loss of companionship, mental anguish, pecuniary loss, loss of inheritance, medical expenses, funeral costs and damage for the physical pain and mental anguish experienced by Renita Hadnot prior to her death.

Michael Phifer of Houston is representing the plaintiffs.

Court assignment is pending.

Case No. B179-341

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