Most Compelling Medical Malpractice Cases of 2019
Patients often see their health care providers as infallible. Unfortunately, this is not the case. Medical professionals are human and can make terrible, life-changing mistakes. If you or a loved one is undergoing medical treatment, always stay alert and don’t be afraid to ask questions. Here are three of the most compelling malpractice cases that unfolded this year.
Mother and child receive highest ever medical malpractice award in Maryland
In July 2019, a Baltimore jury awarded a woman and her child $229.6 million after three hours of deliberation. Five years earlier, the woman, Erica Byrom, delivered the child at 25-weeks’ gestation after she developed life-threatening pregnancy complication called pre-eclampsia.
During her 22-hours of induced labor, Byrom’s daughter did not receive enough oxygen, suffered brain injury, and developed cerebral palsy as a result. The child will likely need round-the-clock care for the rest of her life.
Byrom argued that the hospital was responsible for her daughter’s condition because a C-section would have been a safer option. She says she declined the procedure because doctors had erroneously informed her a C-section could cause her baby to die or suffer brain damage. The jury found her evidence credible and made their historic award. The hospital is appealing the decision.
A former prison inmate wins million-dollar aware in Virginia malpractice case.
A former inmate successfully sued Armor Correction Health Services in July after the medical staff failed to treat his finger properly while he was imprisoned.
John Kinlaw fractured his hand while playing sports at a Virginia correctional facility. The doctor did not image or set the hand, only giving Kinlaw an ice-pack and Motrin as treatment. Evidence showed that his hand should have been stabilized to prevent it from healing improperly.
After the injury, Kinlaw says he repeatedly told the medical staff that his ring finger couldn’t bend properly and that he believed it wasn’t healing correctly. The staff, however, took no action for 100 days. Eventually, an orthopedic specialist confirmed the hand healed improperly and would require surgery–and might not be repairable.
The jury awarded Kinlaw $1 million. Lawyers for the medical staff claim that the jury misunderstood medical facts, and that the care Kinlaw received met the appropriate standard of care.
Major league baseball play receives multi-million-dollar settlement.
Bobby Jenks, a former pitcher for the Chicago White Sox and Boston Red Sox, agreed to accept a $5.1 million settlement in a malpractice suit. Jenks claims that Massachusetts General Hospital and a doctor are responsible for a career-ending spine injury that occurred in 2011 when his doctor was simultaneously overseeing another operation while performing Jenks’. The hospital claims the overlapping operations “played no role” in Jenks’ injury.