(Please note: the names and locations of all parties have been changed to protect the confidentiality of the proceedings.)
PLAINTIFFS’ OPPOSITION TO MOTION FOR SUMMARY ADJUDICATION
MEMORANDUM OF POINTS AND AUTHORITIES
This is a medical malpractice action arising out of a birth injury suffered by the minor, DONALD WHITE. The Complaint alleges that the minor suffered severe and profound damages because of medical negligence at or about the time of birth. For this pregnancy, AMBER WHITE at about 33wks gestation, felt decreased fetal movement; an ultrasound was done found she had excess fluid around the baby and they began doing tests. She was referred to a perinatologist at ABC Medical Center for high-contrast ultrasound. He diagnosed the baby with micrognathia of the lower jaw. He said it was a singular symptom, and that it was not a genetic factor. He recommended the parents deliver at GENERAL HOSPITAL because they would have a higher level of care.
The doctors at GENERAL HOSPITAL assured the parents that the baby would be fine; that the most important part of the delivery was making sure she could breathe once the umbilical cord was cut and then she would have plastic surgery to correct the chin. AMBER WHITE began having pre-term labor which was controlled by medication; her physicians wanted her to get as far as possible. At 37 weeks she began having contractions again; she and her husband, DAVID WHITE went to do pre-admission at GENERAL HOSPITAL on August 2, 2003; they met with the ICU team at that time who assured them that everything would be in place when she went into labor and that an ear, nose, and throat (ENT) surgeon would be there to do a trachea at birth.
On August 6, 2003, AMBER WHITE went to labor and delivery at 3:00 p.m. with contractions, 100% effaced, and 5cm dilated. The monitors were put on and they planned a vaginal delivery. Sometime that afternoon she was told that they would do a c-section because the baby was turned sideways. The c-section was not an emergency; when she was taken to OR, the mother kept asking if the necessary doctors were present, and the parents were assured that everyone was present and were ready for the baby. The baby was born by c-section at 8:15 p.m.; the doctor who was supposed to do the trachea was not present. The baby was bagged but couldn’t be intubated because his throat was not large enough.
They tried to do a trachea but instead cut his vocal cords; he began bleeding heavily and they first had to repair that. The ENT surgeon was paged and he arrived 25 minutes after the baby was born; he did the trachea and put her on a ventilator. The ENT surgeon told the parents that if DONALD lives, he will have brain damage due to lack of oxygen. DONALD did live and is profoundly damaged. (See Part 2 of 8.)
For more information you are welcome to contact Sacramento personal injury lawyer, Moseley Collins.