Many parents are apprehensive about the births of their children. While a variety of concerns may cause expectant parents anxiety, they rarely anticipate that they will lose their child due to the incompetence of their treatment providers. Unfortunately, some fetuses suffer harm before birth that is ultimately fatal, and in many cases, such injuries are caused by the recklessness of healthcare professionals. Parents who suffer the loss of their children at birth can often recover substantial damages, as demonstrated in a recent wrongful death verdict issued in a birth injury case in Baltimore. If your child suffered harm at birth due to the carelessness of a medical provider, it is in your best interest to speak to a knowledgeable Maryland birth injury lawyer as soon as possible to avoid waiving your right to seek redress.
The Plaintiff’s Allegations
It is reported that the mother arrived at the defendant hospital in active labor and at full term shortly after midnight on July 19, 2015. Four hours later, she began receiving doses of the hormone oxytocin to help her deliver. The fetus first displayed signs of cardiac distress around 9:00 am when a sensor indicated a heart rate of 160 beats per minute. The defendant directed the staff not to take any action, however.
According to the complaint, the mother began complaining of severe abdominal pain three and a half hours later. She was not taken to the operating room until 2:00 pm, though, at which time the defendant obstetrician-gynecologist performed an emergency cesarean section. Tragically, the baby was born with no detectable heart rate and resuscitation attempts were ineffective. In February 2018, the parents filed a wrongful death case against the hospital and the obstetrician-gynecologist.
The Trial and Verdict
During the trial, which lasted five days, the jury heard medical testimony from both sides regarding whether the obstetrician-gynecologist decision to delay delivery despite the fetus’ increased heart rate fell within the acceptable level of care. The jury deliberated for two before reaching a decision in favor of the parents.
The jury ultimately awarded almost $1 million to the parents of a stillborn child after finding that negligence by a hospital and its obstetrician-gynecologist caused their son’s death prior to birth. After hearing testimony that the defendant obstetrician-gynecologist waited nearly five hours before delivering the child despite a heart monitor showing the fetus was in cardiac distress, a jury awarded $1.5 million to the plaintiffs, the parents of the deceased child. Due to Maryland’s non-economic damages cap, the award was lowered to slightly less than $1 million. The parents were granted burial expenses as well.
Speak to a Trusted Maryland Attorney
Patients expect their doctors to provide them with competent care, and when they do not, it can cause lasting harm. If your child suffered a fatal birth injury due to medical negligence, you might be owed compensation, and it is smart to speak to an attorney promptly. The trusted Maryland attorneys of Arfaa Law Group take pride in helping people harmed by careless doctors seek justice for their losses, and if you engage our services, we will work diligently on your behalf. You can contact us through our form online or at (410) 889-1850 to set up a meeting.