Family Settles Birth Injury Lawsuit for $2.82 million
Published on March 7, 2015
The family of an 8-year-old girl with cerebral palsy and severe brain damage settled in court for $2.82 million with the hospital alleged to have caused her suffering.
While pregnant, the girl’s mother, Marlis Flood, had some severe and unrelenting abdominal pain. She went to the hospital and was admitted for four days due to antepartum haemorrhage (vaginal bleeding during pregnancy from the 24th week gestational age to term). She was then discharged and routinely monitored by her obstetric team.
About four weeks later, Marlis was experiencing abdominal pain again and went to the hospital for further testing and observation. However, during that visit, she was not scanned or provided the routine monitoring procedures typical in this situation. She was sent home, only to come back the next day with more abdominal pain.
During that visit, she was examined and it was determined that Marlis was fully dilated and her body was communicating that birth was imminent. Marlis’ daughter was born later that evening, but had experienced significant periods of oxygen deprivation and other birth complications, including quadriplegic spastic cerebral palsy, the most severe form of cerebral palsy. It was estimated that her daughter had been deprived of sufficient oxygen for at least six days in utero.
Although the hospital did not admit any liability, they gave the family $1.4 million two years ago in an interim settlement, and just settled late February for $2.82 million. Marlis’ daughter will require lifelong intensive care and she’ll never be able to enjoy a typical lifestyle or care for herself without help or intervention. In fact, the child was unable to ingest nutrition for the first year of life through a feeding tube. Her condition is extremely severe and falls in to the most damaged category of persons. This will require a lifetime of costly medical bills.
According to the CDC’s Autism and Developmental Disabilities Monitoring Network, 1 in 323 children have been identified with cerebral palsy in the U.S. According to Cerebralpalsy.org, “Cerebral palsy is caused by brain injury or brain malformation that occurs before, during or immediately after birth while the infant’s brain is under development.” Depending on the type of injury, the extent of injury, and timing of injury, the brain damage can affect a child’s muscle control, muscle coordination, muscle tone, reflex, posture, balance, fine motor skills, gross motor skills, and oral motor functioning.
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