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$29.1 Million Verdict Secured for Illinois Family

This is a settlement for the Medical Malpractice lawsuit.

Chicago, IL: Lawyers representing Christian Arroyo in a medical malpractice lawsuit brought against the United States of America, have secured a $29.1 million verdict for their clients.

The case alleged obstetric and neonatal negligence by federally employed physicians practicing at Northwestern Memorial Hospital at the time of Christian's birth. It was brought in federal court under the Federal Tort Claims Act, which is the federal law that allows an individual to bring a lawsuit against the federal government, but which requires the case be tried at a bench trial without a jury.

On May 16, 2003, Maria Arroyo, pregnant with her first child, went to the hospital with labor pains. Due to Maria's bag of waters being broken and the baby's prematurity, Maria needed to receive antibiotics to prevent potential Group Beta Strep infection to her baby. The obstetrician, a federal employee, did not give the antibiotics to Maria during labor and delivery. During his first several hours of life, Christian showed multiple signs of having developed an infection. Despite these red flags, the federal government pediatricians did not intervene and order the necessary antibiotics. The infection advanced into Christian's blood stream, traveled to his brain, and caused permanent brain damage.

Since birth, Christian has required daily therapy and medication. He can only eat through a tube, is wheelchair bound and will forever be dependent on someone else to take care of his daily needs. Today, Christian is a spastic quadriplegic with cerebral palsy.

The verdict comes a little less than three months after the trial and following extensive written submissions by the parties regarding the amount of damages. The total of $29.1 million will be setoff by a $6.5 million settlement with the hospital in June of 2009.

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Published on Apr-7-10


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