Minnesota family says girl, 14, in vegetative state because nurse failed to treat asthma

A Minnesota family says their 14-year-old daughter has suffered a traumatic brain injury and is now in a vegetative state after her school nurse failed to treat her asthma earlier this year.

The family has filed a lawsuit against the Lakeville school district as well as the nurse involved. The suit claimed that on April 16, the girl, named Aaliyah, suffered an asthma exacerbation and went to the school nurse.

The nurse did not properly evaluate the girl and instructed her to go to gym class, the lawsuit continued.

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During gym class at McGuire Middle School, the 14-year-old’s airways narrowed to a point where she couldn’t breathe and she passed out, attorneys said. According to the suit, Aaliyah was deprived of oxygen for 30 minutes, suffered a serious brain injury and has remained in a vegetative state requiring her to have caretaking services for the rest of her life.

The parents are seeking damages in excess of $10 million.

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The lawsuit alleged that the school district and nurse had received a care plan from the girl’s doctors with specific instructions for treating her asthma exacerbations.

According to the suit, the girl had a long history of asthma attacks requiring medical intervention and the school district and nurse had been aware of the severity of her condition.

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The school district told Fox 9 it was not responsible for the student’s injuries.

“Lakeville Area Schools are deeply saddened by the medical incident regarding one of our students last April,” the school’s statement said. “We express our deepest sympathy for the student and family. The district takes student health seriously and abides by medical protocols and emergency response procedures. It is our position that the Lakeville Area Schools are not responsible for the injuries outlined in the complaint.”

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