Charles Johnson IV's wife Kira died hours after she gave birth at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in 2016. Johnson IV sued the hospital for medical malpractice, and last week, his attorneys were told to file a settlement notice based on an agreement he and Cedars-Sinai had come to. That said, last week he filed a lawsuit against Cedars-Sinai claiming it was a systematic racial disparity that fueled the medical neglect that killed his wife.

Johnson IV is the son of television Judge Glenda Hatchett. In 2016, he filed a lawsuit for medical malpractice and according to lawyers in the case, that suit has been settled in principle. The trial was set to start on May 11, but on May 5, Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Robert B. Broadbelt ordered attorneys for Johnson IV and his sons to file a notice of settlement of the lawsuit against Cedars-Sinai.

That suit is separate from the one he and his sons filed on May 10, in which he alleges that race played a part in the medical neglect that led to the death of his 39-year-old wife Kyra Johnson. In the new suit, his attorneys found the disparity in care that women of color get when compared to white women at Cedars-Sinaia as they listened to depositions from the first suit.

With regard to the second racial disparity suit, the hospital released a statement:

``We are actively working to eradicate unconscious bias in health care and advance equity in health care more broadly. commend Mr. Johnson for the attention he has brought to the important issue of racial disparities in maternal outcomes.''
The first suit alleged that his wife died due to Cedars-Sinai doctors' negligence--she'd been allowed to bleed to death internally while her husband's concerns and her pain were ignored over the course of seven hours. By the time she'd been brought back to the emergency room for complications from her cesarean surgery, over 90% of her blood had pooled in her stomach. Johnson alleged that the staff failed to take prompt action after they knew there was bright red blood in her catheter bag. He basically saw her bleed to death.

The second suit filed last week alleges that the negligence was due to a culture of racism at the hospital, and that racism was discovered during the depositions for his original lawsuit. Johnson IV said that the greatest risk factor his wife had when she walked into Cedars-Sinai was that she was black. She died about 12 hours after a 17-minute cesarean section that attorneys said shocked everyone who was deposed, calling it sloppy and butchery.

Johnson IV said that one of the nurses even told him his wife wasn't a priority. During the c-section, her bladder had been lacerated and she wasn't sutured properly so she died from internal bleeding 12 hours after giving birth to her second son Landon.

There's been an epidemic of increased deaths for women of color since even before the pandemic, with black women dying at 2.5 the rate of white women during childbirth.