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Brain injury during birth causes great loss for family

There is nothing in the world that can compensate parents for the pain and suffering endured following an injury to a new born child during or shortly after pregnancy. As Maryland families know, such incidents can be tragic and life changing - forcing parents to change the way they raise their child and causing a lifetime of pain and suffering.

One family had their lives rocked when their child was born with a severe brain injury. The mother was admitted to a medical center in the initial stages of labor. An obstetrician, managing the labor, determined the next day that the child needed to be delivered by emergency cesarean section. Unfortunately for the family and for the child too much time had passed and the child suffered brain injury.

The child, who is now seven years old, requires around-the-clock care. Following the birth injury the parents of the child sought justice through the legal system and sued the hospital for compensation for the injuries the family had suffered. The parents are U.S. citizens that immigrated from Somalia.

An Ohio Court of Claims found that the managing doctor failed to properly manage the labor and waited too long to decide to perform a cesarean section. The court also found that the doctor negligently administered the drug Pitocin, which increases the frequency and intensity of contractions, during labor causing decreased blood flow to the baby. As a result, the Ohio State hospital is now paying $5.25 million to settle the family's claim. The settlement claim is the second-largest in the hospital's history.

Brain injuries, particularly at birth, can be devastating for families in Maryland. When a birth injury is the result of hospital negligence or physician error, the patient and their family may be entitled to compensation for losses. A medical malpractice claim can be one step in moving towards financial security and relief after such a traumatizing incident.

Source: The Columbus Dispatch, "Brain injury during birth costs Ohio State hospital $5.25 million," Ben Sutherly, June 28, 2013.

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