Articles Posted in Nursing Negligence

Doe was born prematurely and underwent surgery. He was prescribed home oxygen therapy in anticipation of his discharge. While still hospitalized, Doe kicked his pulse oximeter off of his foot, prompting an alarm.

A respiratory therapist allegedly adjusted Doe’s nasal mask and repositioned him. Less than an hour later, a desaturation alarm sounded. A clinical assistant at the hospital allegedly silenced the alarm and subsequent alarms while providing care over the next 26 minutes.

Doe became cool to the touch. The clinical assistant allegedly attempted to auscultate a heartbeat. Unable to revive the heartbeat, the clinical assistant called for nursing assistance. When a nurse arrived, Doe was limp and unresponsive.
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Baby Doe was born prematurely and spent the first 98 days of her life in a hospital’s neonatal intensive care unit and special care nursery. The day after the baby’s discharge, her mother noticed that she was irritable, grunting, and not eating.

Doe’s mother called the hospital that day and spoke to Nurse Roe, who told the mother that Doe was fine and that she should simply keep her pediatric appointment for the following day.

Four hours after that call, Doe’s parents found Baby Doe turning blue in her crib. She was rushed to a hospital where she later died. An autopsy revealed that Doe’s death resulted from a serious but treatable bacterial infection.
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Kimberly Kirkwood-Boulter was admitted to Massachusetts General Hospital to deliver her first baby. During labor and delivery, the nurse responsible for monitoring the baby’s heart rate had difficulty differentiating Kirkwood-Boulter’s heartbeat from her unborn baby’s. This occurred during the second stage of labor, which lasted about 6 hours.

In spite of all of this, Kirkwood-Boulter was encouraged to push, and the obstetrical team did not switch from intermittent fetal monitoring by way of a handheld device to continuous monitoring.
Kirkwood-Boulter’s baby boy was born severely acidotic and not breathing. The baby’s Apgar scores were one at one minute and three at five minutes, which are low scores for a newborn. Now the child is 6 years old and suffers from brain damage. He cannot walk, talk or feed himself.

Kirkwood-Boulter and her husband sued the hospital, members of its delivery team, and the employer of the attending nurse, Cross Country Staffing Inc. It was alleged in the lawsuit that these defendants chose not to provide continuous monitoring during the labor and delivery.
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On April 6, 2007,  Dramara Sviels was born at Memorial Medical Center in Springfield, Ill. During the delivery, Dramara contracted Group B Streptococcus infection, which was claimed not diagnosed before Dramara was discharged from the hospital the next day. As a result of the infection, it progressed to very serious meningitis, which was diagnosed on April 8, 2007. The meningitis left Dramara with cerebral palsy and seizure disorder. According to the report of this case, the lifetime medical and caretaking expenses would amount to more than $20 million.

In the lawsuit filed by Dramara’s family, it was maintained that the child was exhibiting symptoms of sepsis during his stay at Memorial Hospital at the time of his discharge and during an April 7 phone call from Dramara’s  parents to the hospital nursery after discharge. The lawsuit maintained that these symptoms should have been immediately treated.

The experts who testified on behalf of Dramara’s family stated that a chain of command protocol at the hospital should have been initiated to delay the infant’s discharge and that the nurses who handled the April 7 phone call should have referred the baby to a pediatrician or to the emergency room for immediate care.

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Alice Sodjago was in labor when she was admitted to a hospital. The nurse who treated her performed a vaginal exam and noted the presence of heavy meconium. The fetal monitor revealed fetal distress. The nurse contacted a midwife who did not call the on-call obstetrician. About 20 minutes later, the midwife arrived at the hospital and called the obstetrician. Sodjago’s daughter was delivered by Caesarean section almost 40 minutes later.
As a result of oxygen deprivation, the baby, now 8 years old, suffers from cognitive impairment and cortical blindness.

Sodjago and her husband, individually and on behalf of their 8-year-old daughter, filed a lawsuit against the hospital and the midwife claiming that they chose not to perform a timely emergency Caesarean section delivery, which would have saved the baby and prevented the devastating brain damage caused by the delay in delivery.

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H.D. was admitted to a hospital in labor. The nurses and midwife observed H.D. throughout the night without any notable changes. However, early the next morning, the fetal monitor showed non-reassuring signs of the unborn child. No one consulted an obstetrician or warned a doctor about the non-reassuring signs.

About six hours later, H.D. delivered her son; he was born with the umbilical cord wrapped around his neck three times. The hospital’s resuscitation team was attending to another patient, which resulted in an 8-minute delay in having the child intubated.

As a consequence, the baby suffered severe brain damage. He is now 6 years old and has cerebral palsy, developmental delays and a seizure disorder.

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The baby, Zoey Stavrou, was delivered by Cesarean section at Edward Hospital in DuPage County, Ill., at 12:25 a.m. on May 14, 2006. She had Apgar scores at 0 at 1, 5 and 10 minutes. At the time of the delivery, a 9-centimeter umbilical cord hematoma was discovered, which had occurred as a result of a ruptured umbilical vein.

Zoey is now 8 years old and has severe cerebral palsy. She is non-verbal and has no functional mobility. She has the cognitive level of a 6-9 month infant and is dependent for all activities of daily living.

Zoey’s family contended that the defendant delivering physician and labor and delivery nurses chose not to properly interpret and act upon non-reassuring fetal monitor strips throughout the evening of May 13. They also contended that the emergency C-section should have been ordered around 9 p.m., but the defendant obstetrician, Dr. Chen, negligently waited until midnight to order the C-section. It was also claimed that Dr. Chen did not perform the incision for the C-section until 12:19 a.m. and the child would have been born neurologically intact if she had been delivered before 12:08 a.m.

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