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Children's Hospital Settled Birth Injury Lawsuit the Day Trial Was Scheduled to Begin

Mellino Law Firm

More than four years after an IV tube mistake caused a baby’s brain damage, the hospital has settled the family’s medical malpractice lawsuit, their attorney told mlive.com.

August 12, 2012, the website said the child “was born Feb. 26, 2010, after an uncomplicated pregnancy and Cesarean section.” When she showed symptoms of jaundice a few hours later, she was treated with light therapy. When the condition didn’t improve quickly enough, a doctor suggested an exchange transfusion to prevent brain damage. “In that procedure, blood is slowly withdrawn through a tube in the belly button while fresh blood or plasma flows in through another tube,” mlive stated.

Unfortunately, doctors neglected to flush all of the air out of the IV line, and the baby suffered cardiac arrest. After 40 minutes of resuscitation, she was connected to a ventilator. CT scans later revealed permanent brain damage.

The hospital admitted liability and a doctor even left an apology note on the baby’s bed. It also provided financial assistance to the family, which included physical therapy, nursing, lost wages, and a rental home and van. But the amount reportedly fluctuated and the hospital’s insurance company had to approve any changes.

“It was kind of like going to your dad and asking for allowance all the time,” the child’s father told reporter Sue Thoms. He and his wife hired a birth injury lawyer in order “to move on with their lives” and to protect their claim before the statute of limitations expired.

“It’s unfortunate that it had to come to that,” the child’s mother said. “We really believed they were going to do the right thing and resolve it without having to go public and have a lawsuit. They know they are wrong, and they are responsible.”

August 4, 2014, mlive.com reported that the hospital settled their claim the day trial was scheduled to begin, according to the family’s attorney. Though details are confidential, the settlement will undoubtedly assist the child, who can only crawl and stand using rehabilitation devices but may never walk or talk, and her mother and father, who had to quit their job and take a leave of absence, respectively. The couple also cares for two other children, including a nine-year-old daughter with cerebral palsy.

If you have questions about your child’s birth injury, attorney Chris Mellino invites you to contact our Cleveland office for a free consultation. You may also download Chris’ free, easy-to-read guide, Your Ohio Medical Malpractice Questions Answered, read testimonials, or learn about previous case results.

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