Parents of the injured newborn baby sued the United States early last year, seeking $15 million in damages. The couple alleged that inadequate care at the military hospital caused their child to be born with developmental disabilities. The government denied any malpractice and admits no wrongdoing, although it entered into the settlement agreement.
In 2006, the expectant mother was admitted into the hospital due to severe cramping in her lower abdomen. She was 35 weeks pregnant, and was moved to a triage room and connected to a fetal heart monitor, which showed abnormalities indicating that the fetus was under stress. According to court documents, the hospital staff left the pregnant woman for more than one hour without any intervention, that is, instead of notifying a doctor for immediate and necessary medical attention.
It was not until approximately 2-1/2 hours after she was checked in that doctors performed an emergency cesarean section. The doctors determined that the placenta had detached from the uterine wall, which caused a loss of oxygen to the fetus. The newborn baby girl was born pale and limp, with respiratory failure and a slow heart rate. She was intubated and later transferred to a specialized childrens hospital for treatment.
According to records, the newborn's neurological injuries are extensive, severe and permanent. The baby is severely delayed in all areas of development; and bodily injury damages, including cerebral palsy, will be lifelong.
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