A hospital found negligent was forced to pay out a birth injury settlement in the amount of $5 million to a 30-year-old woman whose child suffered severe birth injuries. The injuries were a direct result of medical malpractice.
A study reports that medical records submitted to the court showed that the plaintiff’s medical history illustrated no dire warning – i.e. nothing to be concerned about. The woman had progressed through her first pregnancy normally.
However, the plaintiff’s midwife reported that the 30-year-old was admitted into the hospital in premature labor with a 2cm-dialated cervix. An external fetal monitor was placed on her abdomen.
Approximately seven hours later, the fetal heart monitor detected a decline in the baby’s heart rate. The monitor also began not showing the complete tracing of contractions.
“Because it is difficult to determine if the deceleration of a baby’s heart rate is a direct reason to be concerned, there are standard procedures put into effect to further monitor what is going on in the womb,” the midwife states.
However, the attending obstetrician failed to follow through with standard procedures even though other concerns continued to surface. Delivery staff should have been put into action when the position of the baby (which would cause a prolonged delivery) was revealed and fluctuations in the babies heart rate continued.
An emergency Cesarean section that would have provided a faster delivery and lessened or removed the chances of birth injury to the child was not performed.
A doctor said that “testimonies and court records brought up one incident after another where alternative measures should have been considered – especially after the plaintiff herself started to show signs of distress.”
Almost 12 hours after the attending physician was initially paged to intervene, the obstetrician finally made the decision to immediately deliver the baby via vacuum suction instead of going to an operating room and performing a c-section. Hospitals in The Bronx and Brooklyn use this as standard procedure in cases like this one.
Because the staff allowed the situation to reach such a critical level, the baby began suffering from seizures in the NICU and MRIs revealed severe brain damage. The child is likely to be unable to walk, talk, sit without support, or even feed herself.
A birth injury is emotionally, psychologically and physically exhausting for the whole family. The expenses are another worry that should not plague you – especially if the birth injury was because of blatant malpractice as in this case. If you have questions or concerns or already know you want to pursue a suit against a doctor or facility, contact a New York Brain Injury Attorney today.