Newlywed Nurse's Family Sues American Airlines Over Wrongful Death
By Angelina Gibson
According to a lawsuit, the family of nurse Brittany Oswell, 25, have initiated a wrongful death lawsuit against American Airlines. They say the airline failed to provide her with the medical help she needed. According to the lawsuit Oswell would be alive today had the Pilot diverted the plane and emergency landed.
On April 15, 2016, Oswell fell ill aboard an American Airlines flight from Hawaii to South Carolina - she was returning home from her honeymoon. The newlywed was flying with her husband, Cory, when according to the lawsuit, she began feeling “dizzy and disoriented,” and fainted midair. A doctor aboard the flight assessed Oswell and determined she was suffering from a panic attack.
Between 1-3 hours later, her husband found her unconscious on the lavatory floor - she had vomited and defecated on herself. She was able to regain consciousness briefly while the doctor attempted to take her blood pressure.
According to the lawsuit, as the plane flew over Albuquerque NM, the doctor alerted the flight crew to land the plane at the nearest airport. The doctor reportedly asked the crew to land the plane three times. The Pilot apparently consulted with another doctor and decided not to divert the plane - it continued flying another 90 minutes to the original destination of Dallas-Fort Worth TX.
Shortly thereafter, Oswell lost consciousness again. The Doctor was unable to find a pulse and attempted to use the defibrillator, performed CPR and administered epinephrine. According to the lawsuit, the defibrillator did not administer a shock and the Oswell did not regain consciousness.
She was pronounced brain-dead at Baylor Medical Center and passed away three days later, after being taken off life support. According to reports, she suffered an acute massive pulmonary embolism and cardiogenic shock.
The lawsuit alleges that the airline's failure "to timely divert the flight and make an emergency landing denied Brittany the ability and opportunity to receive proper medical care in a timely manner, resulting in her death." It adds that the airline failed to provide properly functioning medical equipment aboard the flight.
“We absolutely felt like this was not taken very seriously. She’s no longer here to do anything with us and it’s all because someone made a business decision to keep flying a plane when she needed emergency medical help that they could not provide because of inadequacies on board the flight," said her mother, Tina Starks in an interview with ABC news.
According to Newsweek, American Airlines released the following statement,
“We were deeply saddened by this event and our thoughts and prayers continue to go out to Mrs. Oswell’s loved ones. We take the safety of our passengers very seriously and we are looking into the details of the complaint,” remarked an American Airlines Spokesperson.