The family of a teen who developed cerebral palsy because of her premature birth was recently awarded one of the largest verdicts in the history of Staten Island.
Cerebral palsy is a set of disorders that impair a person's movement, and the ability to maintain posture and balance. The disorder appears in the early years of a person's life. It is estimated that approximately 10,000 babies born each year in the U.S. will develop cerebral palsy. The disorder is unfortunately incurable.
The victim and her twin were delivered prematurely after the hospital purportedly fell short of giving them appropriate care. The victim suffered a brain injury that led to cerebral palsy.
The wheelchair-bound 17-year-old sadly noted that she spent years watching her twin have fun and go to parties. She, on the other hand, was not able to be as active as the typical teenager.
A New York Supreme Court jury concluded that hospital employees were careless in failing to identify the mother's contractions prior to her going into labor. In addition, the staffers did not do the work necessary to avoid the premature delivery of her daughters. Instead of listening to her complaints the night of the premature births, they just gave her some Benadryl pills.
The jury opined that the hospital was accountable for $17 million for pain and suffering, along with $60 million for future pain and suffering. The award also covered payment for lost employment wages and future medical expenses, which added together, were over $100,000
Earlier this year, The Baltimore Sun reported that a Maryland jury awarded a local couple $21 million after the hospital's negligence caused their child to be born with cerebral palsy.
The birth was in 2002. Ever since then, the victim has had a completely functioning mind but a seriously disabled body. In other words, he is virtually trapped inside his body.
In the lawsuit, the victim's family allege that the boy lost oxygen when he was in his mother's womb, and the hospital's healthcare providers should have carried out a C-section instead of permitting an extended vaginal birth.
Another Maryland couple was awarded $55 million this year for medical negligence. It was one of the largest verdicts in the history of the state for a medical malpractice lawsuit. The couple's son was born with cerebral palsy in 2010. They also claimed that their baby lost oxygen when he was in his mother's womb and that the medical staff of the treating hospital should have carried out a Caesarian section sooner than they actually did.
The boy's family was awarded $1 million for pain and suffering, $2 million for lost possible wages, and $18 million for medical treatment. However, if the verdict stands on appeal, the damages will be limited due to a state cap on non-economic damages.
When a loved one is about to deliver, the family hopes for the safety of both the mother and baby previous to and after the delivery. It is therefore very unfortunate that many doctors and nurses fail to do what is expected of them, causing innocent babies to develop brain injury/cerebral palsy and such other serious issues.
If your child developed cerebral palsy because of negligence or error on the part of the hospital where the delivery took place, a medical malpractice attorney can protect your legal rights and get you the compensation that you are entitled to.