Family settles medical malpractice claim over boy's birth injury

He was born nearly three and a half years ago. Instead of anticipating the day their son begins kindergarten, his parents are planning for his lifetime of required care.

At his birth, he suffered a "catastrophic brain injury" due to medical malpractice, according to the lawsuit the family filed far from us in Joplin. Media reports indicate the family recently settled their claims against a Honolulu military hospital for $9 million.

The settlement is still to be reviewed and approved by the U.S. Department of Justice, one of the family's medical malpractice attorneys said.

The boy was born at Tripler Army Medical Center in September of 2010 after his mother arrived at the facility with severe abdominal pain in her 35th week of pregnancy. Because of previous miscarriages, she was at risk of uterine rupture and was being closely monitored by an obstetrician.

But according to the lawsuit, the hospital staff failed "to promptly notify and consult the obstetrician who had been managing" her pregnancy despite the signs that her uterus had ruptured.

Because of that negligence, the suit alleged, her son will require care for every hour of every day for the rest of his life.

Obviously, the compensation in no way makes up for the injuries the boy suffered and the long-term effects he and his family will endure because of those injuries. Those costs are incalcuable. But the compensation will help his parents pay for the care he needs today and over the years to come, even after their passing.

Source: The Republic, "Lawyers: $9M proposed settlement for Virginia boy with cerebral palsy born in Hawaii hospital," Jennifer Sinco Kelleher, Jan. 29, 2014



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