A medical malpractice suit was filed in Florida against a hospital, alleging that a medication error led to the premature birth of a child with resulting brain damage. The child’s mother had been admitted to the hospital to be put on bed rest at the 22nd week of her pregnancy. Her doctors ordered medication to prevent the child from being delivered but she was instead given another medication which resulted in her delivering the child while she was seated on a portable toilet.While I am not familiar with the exact facts of this case, as an experienced Chicago birth injury attorney, I suspect that there are 2 likely causes for this medication error:
- she was given the wrong medication because of a sound-alike error (i.e., when the order was called into the pharmacy, the pharmacist heard and prepared a different medication from the one ordered); and/or
- there was an error in the preparation and delivery of the medication (i.e., they simply took the wrong medication off the shelf).
This is the kind of negligence that results in infant brain damage malpractice suits. In a hospital setting, there are additional steps beyond those that are taken in the hospital pharmacy to prevent medication errors. When nurses give medications, they are trained to make 5 checks: right patient, right medication, right dose, right route and right time. This is an additional safeguard against medication errors that was apparently disregarded in this case.For its part, the hospital admitted that the error took place and instituted additional safeguards to prevent recurrence of this type of error. Unlike most kinds of infant brain damage malpractice suits resulting from trauma, when there is a medication error, there is usually one or more discrete, identifiable places where the error occurred. Once identified, the possibility of recurrence can be lessened through changes in procedure or retraining. A newborn’s brain is extremely susceptible to damage at birth from physical and chemical trauma. Because the injuries sustained can cause lifelong disability and suffering, infant brain damage malpractice suits are often highly compensated but difficult to resolve.A Chicago birth injury attorney will be your greatest asset in seeking the compensation for the lifelong care your child may need if he or she suffered a brain injury at birth. The Law Offices of Barry G. Doyle are here to help Illinois families deal with this tragic event. Contact us today for a free consultation – 312-263-1080.