City Pays $300k to Family of Man Paralyzed After Rikers Doctors Failed to Treat a Fungal Infection

April 7, 2015 | Liam Mathews

The city has paid a $300,000 settlement to the family of a now-deceased Rikers Island inmate who was paralyzed from the waist down after doctors failed to adequately treat his severe fungal infection, DNAInfo reports.

Jose Ferrer, who died in 2010, was incarcerated at Rikers Island in August 2008 for failing to complete a drug treatment program. He told staff at the facility that he had been taking antibiotics for a fungal infection before he was locked up, but they and doctors at Bellevue Hospital, where he was sent for a scan and then sent back to Rikers, failed to diagnose and re-administer antibiotics to Ferrer.

The infection spread to his lower spine where it formed an abscess, paralyzing him.

Inadequate medical care is a chronic issue at Rikers. Many inmates have died due to medical neglect in recent years, symptomatic of persisting issues around corruption and inmate abuse at the prison complex.

(Photo: Matt Green)