A Florida family was awarded over $30 million after a jury found that the Lee Memorial hospital failed to properly care for a mother and her baby while the mother was giving birth. The failure of the hospital to properly care for the mother resulted in the baby, who is now nine years old, having permanent braing damage,
Aaron Edwards, who was born in 1999, suffered from brain damage as a result of the hospital’s failure to follow its own guidelines during delivery of a child. Aaron’s mother showed two of the three signs that would have indicated that the pitocin being given to her should have been halted.
As a result of the injury, Aaron is unable to do virtually anything. The jury found that the hospital indeed did fail to meet the proper standard of care during the delivery. The award must still, however, be approved by the Legislature. If it is approved, it will be the highest medical malpractice award ever in Lee County.
Of the $30 million, approximately $18 million will be needed to pay for Aaron’s medical bills. Hopefully the Legislature will do the right thing and approve the award. The jury listened and awarded the amount based on what they heard and felt was right and just. It should not be the Legislature’s place now to change that award.
In Illinois, this award may not have been accepted based on the new caps. However, these caps are currently being challenged and depending on the outcome of a similar brain damage case, the caps may be found unconstitutional.