Life is full of milestones: driving your first car, graduating high school, going to college, getting your first real job, and getting married. Though not everyone has these experiences, or in the same order, often times a very important event in your timeline is having a baby.
As any parent will tell you, the day you welcome a child into this world is a day that you change profoundly. Not only do your responsibilities and priorities rearrange, but your perspective on life drastically shifts. You hold that tiny bundle of joy in your arms, and at that moment, there is clarity; raising and protecting this child will become one of your life’s greatest journeys. That first day in the hospital is the first time you are with your family. Together with your spouse, you eagerly await the days ahead, happy and healthy.
Sadly, not every child is brought into this world in such a picture-perfect way. Due to complications and errors during the birthing process, children can be significantly injured and scarred for life. Though some birth injuries are unavoidable, many are actually caused by doctor error.
According to Injury Lawyer News, the T.J. Samson Community Hospital was the location of a tragic birth injury in the summer of 2007. A woman from Glasgow, Kentucky was admitted to the hospital to give birth to her son. In her civil complaint against the hospital, the mother alleged that she had no pre-existing conditions or a high-risk pregnancy. An obstetrician ordered other hospital staffers to administer a drug called Pitocin, which is used to control the number of contractions that a woman experiences during child birth. He allegedly said that the number of contractions should not exceed four per ten minutes.
Unfortunately, that order was not followed closely by hospital staff. The mother experienced the same contraction pattern for nearly six hours, which resulted in a cut-off of oxygen to the baby. When it came time to deliver the child, the head became lodged in the birth canal. As a result of these mistakes, the child was born misshapen and deformed. Doctors then diagnosed the child with spastic quadriplegia, which is a form of cerebral palsy.
Several years after their son’s birth, the Kentucky family filed suit against the hospital for the botched delivery. After a month-long trial, a jury awarded the family with $17.5 million in damages. Although the damage award involves a significant sum of money, it will have to last for the rest of the boy’s life. He requires continuous care and is not expected to ever be able to care for himself.