Family of 17-year-old teen with birth injury wins lawsuit

The family of 17-year-old twins, one healthy and the other with cerebral palsy, won a multi-million dollar lawsuit for negligence filed against the hospital where the twin girls were born.

The twins were born three months early but as a result of negligence during labor, one twin suffered a birth injury resulting in cerebral palsy while the other did not suffer any injuries. The family alleged that the hospital staff did not recognize the mother’s contractions, gave her Benadryl, and failed to prevent the premature birth of the twin girls.

The birth of a child is a life changing event and happy moment for many families. But, according to the Center for Disease Control, one in 1000 newborns will suffer a birth injury during the labor and delivery process. Despite advances in medical technology and medicine, medical mistakes in hospitals occur much more frequently than most people suspect. As the case above illustrates, one wrong move or action by staff can have life altering consequences.

A birth injury is an example of a medical error. As a result of the error, doctors, nurses, hospitals and others that provide healthcare can be held liable for negligence. Recoverable damages may include medical expenses (past and future), lost wages, loss of consortium, pain and suffering, and more.

Healthcare providers have an on-going duty to provide a reasonable standard of care. When hospital staff fail to provide adequate care or are negligent in the care they provide, they should be held accountable. No amount of compensation can ease the pain and reverse the harm caused by a birth injury. But, as the case above illustrates, a medical malpractice suit may help secure compensation for the future needs of the child and family.

Source: New York Post, “Family of SI cerebral palsy teen wins $100M lawsuit against birth hospital,” Josh Saul, Aug. 25, 2012

Posted in: Birth Injuries