Despite frequent prenatal visits and care prior to giving birth, childbirth in Delaware does not always go according to plan. Some children suffer unfortunate birth injuries resulting in life long care and dependency on others. One family in another state took their birth injury case to court, and the judge awarded them $23.1 million.
Approximately five years ago, then 38-year-old mother went into labor. As determined during her prenatal care, a neonatologist would be present at birth due to the mother's high risk pregnancy. At some point during labor, the nurse and the mother of the child became aware of signs that the baby may have been in distress, and the obstetrician performed an emergent cesarean section. Reportedly, the neonatologist was notified of the pending birth, but he did not respond.
According to the physician, he had left his cell phone and pager at the hospital after changing clothes to leave for home, creating a delay in his response. Despite another neonatologist being able to be reached for evaluation of the baby, lawyers argued that a quicker response in treatment may have lessened her life-long injuries. She suffered a 60 percent blood loss at birth, and lawyers argued that the three hours it took to transfuse the baby added to the severity of her injuries. She now suffers cerebral palsey and epilepsy, among other injuries, leaving her dependent on others for care.
The occupational, physical and speech therapy she now requires on top of her medical treatment surely has caused her parents financial stress. In addition to the added bills, the mother stopped bringing home an income in order to be the full time caregiver for her daughter. Birth injuries are difficult emotionally, physically and financially for any parent. Any Delaware parent that suspects their child's injuries may have been preventable may benefit from speaking with an experienced medical malpractice attorney about their options to recoup monetary damages.
Source: Chicago Tribune, "Malpractice verdict: $23.1 million for family of Tinley Park girl who suffered brain damage at birth", Mike Nolan, May 12, 2017