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Parents sue hospital for medical malpractice

The teenager's parents recently filed a medical malpractice suit against a hospital. The suit, which was filed on a recent Thursday in February alleged not only medical malpractice, but civil rights violations as well. When a medical professional in Maryland commits an error that causes injury to the patient, the patient or the patient's family may be entitled to file a medical malpractice suit. 

The parents claim that their teenage daughter went to an out-of-state medical center to be treated for mitochondrial disease. In Feb. 2013, she was then treated at a second hospital, due to her original gastroenterologist transferring there. When the teen arrived at the hospital and was to be admitted to the GI unit, she was, instead, "intercepted" in the hospital's emergency room by a different doctor. This doctor changed the teen's diagnosis. 

The doctor believed her illness was psychosomatic in nature and took her off her prescribed medications. The parents attempted to discharge the teen, but the hospital contacted the Massachusetts Department of Children and Families. The Boston Children's Hospital claimed the parents committed medical child abuse by interfering with the teen's required medical care and in opting for unnecessary treatments. The teen was taken into custody by the DCF for over one year -- during that time the teen, who is now 17 years old, was placed in a psychiatric unit. According to the suit, when the teen was transferred to the hospital, she was only suffering from the flu, but now is confined to a wheelchair and cannot walk.

When a patient in Maryland undergoes a similar experience and suffers an injury due to the negligence of a medical professional, the victim or family may have grounds to pursue a medical malpractice lawsuit against the party or parties believed responsible. If successfully navigated, a monetary judgment may be entered for damages sustained, including hospital bills and physical therapy. A medical malpractice victim often begins this process by consulting with an experienced personal injury attorney to assess the validity of his or her claim.

Source: boston.com, "Family of Justina Pelletier sues Boston Children's Hospital", Dialynn Dwyer, Feb. 25, 2016

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