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$10.1 million awarded in medical malpractice case

A jury in another state awarded $10.1 million to a mother and son in a medical malpractice case recently. The jury determined that the physicians at the children's hospital where the son was treated failed to make a timely diagnosis of the son's bacterial meningitis after he had made several trips to the emergency room where they worked. When the medical conditions or injuries of Maryland residents are caused or worsened by medical professionals or their employers, those injured retain the right to file a medical malpractice suit against the parties believed responsible.  

The child was only 11 months old at the time he contracted meningitis. As a result of the medical malpractice, the boy, now 6 years old, suffers from language disorder, hearing loss, learning and developmental delays as well as a loss of balance. The verdict rendered on a recent Monday in November included $7.5 million for pain and suffering, $1.5 million for future medical care, and $1.1 million for loss of earnings. 

The boy had been sick for a few days with fever as well as other symptoms, and he was taken to the emergency room at the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia on Dec. 21, 2009. During the first visit, his condition was diagnosed as an upper respiratory infection. He was sent home, not having undergone or received much treatment, the boy's attorney said. His condition worsened, and he was taken a second and third time, but by the time it was established that the boy had contracted bacterial meningitis, it was already too late. The damage -- permanent brain damage as well as other injuries -- had already been done. 

When a medical professional makes an erroneous diagnosis that causes or worsens a Maryland patient's condition, the individual may be entitled to file a medical malpractice suit again the party or parties believed responsible. Any damages recovered from a successfully litigated claim may be used to help pay for medical bills, lost pay and pain and suffering experienced. Individuals typically begin the process by consulting an experienced personal injury attorney. 

Source: philly.com, "Jury awards $10.1M in malpractice case against CHOP", Chris Mondics, Nov. 20, 2015

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