Kamiya’s Day in Court: Trial in Children’s of Alabama wrongful death suit set for 2023

Alabama News

Kamiya Dufermeau died at Children’s Hospital after complications from an appendectomy she’d had there a week earlier. (Courtesy of Sherry Robinson)

Christmas Day
December 25 2021 12:00 am

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WIAT) — Kamiya, the 7-year-old girl who died in May following an appendectomy, will get her day in court, but it may take some time.

On Friday, a judge laid out a rough timeline on how the wrongful death case of Kamiya Dufermeau will proceed, saying the trial will take place sometime in 2023.

Kamiya’s mother, Sherry Robinson, is suing pediatric hospital Children’s of Alabama and two Birmingham doctors after her daughter died due to complications from a surgery removing her appendix.

The initial scheduling order by Circuit Judge Jim Hughey III said that “all fact discovery, including…witness depositions” in the case must be completed by Sept. 2, 2022.

Kamiya Dufermeau became sick in mid-April 2021 and was diagnosed with appendicitis. After more conservative, nonsurgical interventions did not improve her condition, Dr. Colin Martin, who is affiliated with Children’s of Alabama, performed a laparoscopic appendectomy on her.

About a week later, Kamiya still felt lethargic, tired and weak. On May 4, Kamiya’s mother brought her daughter to Dr. Theresa Bolus, a physician at Midtown Pediatrics, a facility run by Children’s of Alabama.

Bolus diagnosed the child with pinworms and sent her home. She did not conduct a physical exam, according to Robinson’s suit.

The day after Kamiya’s doctor’s visit, her grandmother called 911, and paramedics arrived to find the girl without a pulse. She was brought to Children’s of Alabama where doctors “performed four rounds of pediatrics advanced life support,” according to the lawsuit. Their efforts were not successful.

An autopsy conducted by Jefferson County Coroner & Medical Examiner’s Office showed that Kamiya died “because of an undiagnosed and untreated postsurgical bowel complication.”

Children’s of Alabama and both doctors named in the complaint have denied responsibility for Kamiya’s death in court filings. In separate responses to the suit, the hospital and two doctors denied responsibility for Kamiya’s death and argued that the state’s wrongful death law violates the constitution.

The court is set to hold another conference on Sept. 7, 2022, to set a firm trial date and discuss other scheduling details.

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