A Texas judge has approved the terms of a settlement agreement between relatives of the only person to die in the U.S. from Ebola and the hospital where he died. The monetary details of the deal remain confidential, but a settlement agreement between the family of Thomas Eric Duncan and Presbyterian Hospital in Dallas was approved on Wednesday, a CBS affiliate in Dallas has confirmed.
Duncan’s family had previously filed a lawsuit against Presbyterian. The agreement will keep both parties out of court. Some details of the settlement were announced by attorney Les Weisbrod, who also noted that Duncan’s family would not be charged for the care he received. He did not disclose specific terms, but called the settlement a “very good deal” that would provide for Duncan’s parents and his four children.
“The errors in this case happened regardless of race and regardless of insurance coverage,” Weisbrod said. That statement was a reversal from previous claims by Duncan’s family about the hospital and his care. Duncan’s nephew, Josephus Weeks, had alleged that his uncle’s death was partly due to his race, nationality and lack of insurance.
Other portions of the settlement will go to create the Texas Health Dallas Thomas Eric Duncan Memorial Fund to help treat Ebola victims in Liberia, the Dallas Morning News reported. The country is at the epicenter of the crisis that has so far killed more than 4,900 people. The hospital also announced the settlement in a written statement. “We are grateful to reach this point of reconciliation and healing for all involved,” the statement said.
Duncan arrived in Texas from Liberia on Sept. 20 and was sent away from the hospital’s emergency room with only antibiotics, something Presbyterian administrators admitted was an error. An ambulance brought him back to the hospital two days later where he was diagnosed with possible signs of Ebola. He died on Oct. 8.