On August 1, 2007, Charles Dean, the baby boy of the Deans, was born by cesarian emergency delivery just 23 months and 4 days into the pregnancy and weighed just 1 pound and 26 ounces. Baby boy Dean lived for two (2) days and then died as he was just too small to survive outside the womb at that time. The parents of baby boy Dean, the Deans, brought a Medical Malpractice lawsuit against the two (2) obstetricians in charge of the care of the mother, Katherine Dean, during her pregnancy, for the Wrongful Death of Baby Boy Charles Dean. The case is Dean v. Central Georgia Women’s Health Center, No. 72025.
In the lawsuit, the Deans argued that the mother had a prior history of miscarriage and a cervix condition and that, although all the tests that were ordered by the doctors were correct, when the mother began experiencing problems that lead to the premature delivery, the doctors failed to follow through when they should have been paying attention and doing more to stop the premature delivery of this baby. The Defense argued that the mother’s cervical condition and the premature delivery were not synonymous and that the treatment that a medical expert testified should have been performed during the pregnancy would not have prevented the premature labor and subsequent delivery.
The Macon, Georgia, Bibb County, Jury would disagree with the doctors’ defense, however, and, after a two (2) hour and fifteen (15) minute deliberation following a seven (7) day trial, would render a verdict in the total amount of $ 4.3 million dollars for the Deans.
The Jury award was divided as follows:
1.) $ 3.5 Million Dollars for the life of baby boy Dean;
2.) $ 200,000.00 for the pain and suffering of the baby;
3.) $ 600,000.00 for the pain and suffering of Katherine Dean, the mother; and
4.) The remainder of the amounts for Funeral Expenses and Medical Bills.
The Deans would go on to have a healthy baby girl in the year 2009 which would also show the steps that could have been, and arguably should have been, taken in the earlier pregnancy with baby boy Dean. These steps included placement of a cerclage (i.e. a suture of the cervix), injections of progesterone, and additional treatments.
It would also be acknowledged that one of the real tragedies here is that if baby boy Dean could have stayed in the womb up until 24 or more months that his chances of survival, statistically, would have increased each day. Our hearts and sympathies go out to the Deans and to any family who loses a child prematurely whether or not it was the fault of Medical Malpractice or otherwise.
At Julie A. Rice, Attorney at Law, & Affiliates we are experts at representing clients in Medical Malpractice Cases involving Catastrophic Injuries and Wrongful Death including cases such as the Deans, and other birth defect and birth trauma cases. We offer a Free Legal Consultation and can be reached by any or all of the following means: By phone at (770) 865-8654, and (813) 363-6664; and email@example.com; or Contact Us on the contact form on our Website; or the Contact Form on our blog.
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