The birth of a baby is an exciting time for most Miami parents. But, that excitement can turn to agony when doctors fail to provide the baby with adequate medical care. A couple recently won a $1.25 million medical malpractice award after their daughter died due to improper catheter placement.
The Michigan couple allege that their daughter, who was born six weeks prematurely in June 2009, died after a radiologist inserted a catheter tip into her heart. It should have been inserted into a vein of her umbilical cord. The improper placement caused fluid to surround the girl’s heart. Her lungs collapsed, and she died three days later of cardiac arrest.
After the catheter was inserted, X-rays were taken to ensure it was placed properly. Even though the X-rays showed that the tip was in the girl’s heart, the radiologist said that nothing looked abnormal and did nothing to move the catheter.
The couple sued the estate of the radiologist, who died in May 2012. A jury sided with the couple, who was awarded $1.25 million.
Doctors are human and make mistakes, but this was an egregious error that could have been prevented had the radiologist thoroughly reviewed the X-rays. It appears as though the doctor ignored the X-rays, resulting in a fatal medical error. This negligence has brought a lifetime of devastation to a couple who were excited about the birth of their baby. Although the baby was born prematurely, she was otherwise healthy. It’s an unfortunate situation to see a baby decline in health while a doctor fails to provide a reasonable standard of medical care.
Source: M Live, “Grand Rapids couple awarded $1.25 million in malpractice suit after infant daughter’s death” Heidi Fenton, Mar. 27, 2014