$84.3 million jury verdict and protocol change after baby born with jaundice failed to receive proper care-condition resulted in quadriplegia with cerebral palsy
Infant client was born with jaundice. The hospital released him without adequate testing or treatment. Both parents reported that the baby's skin was yellow and he was experiencing difficulty feeding.
Dr. did not request to see the baby and failed to recognize that both calls dealt with the same baby. The parents, concerned about the apathy displayed by Dr., called the emergency room. Twelve hours after initially speaking with Dr., Andrew was finally admitted to the hospital.
Medical tests found client to be suffering from hyperbilirubinemia and kernicterus, conditions found in newborn babies when their livers cannot break down a blood waste called bilirubin. Bilirubin becomes a potent neurotoxin if allowed to accumulate in the body.
The poisoning of Andrew's brain, due to a delay in treatment caused him to become a quadriplegic with cerebral palsy. Andrew’s parents maintained that the doctor was dismissive of the parents' initial concerns regarding their baby, inattentive to the infant's symptoms and failed to competently deal with the baby's problems.
$84.3 million jury verdict. The hospital changed its protocol, making bilirubin tests mandatory for any baby who shows signs of jaundice.