Louisiana parents who have experienced premature birth can likely remember the range of emotions they felt during their child’s time in the hospital, and particularly the worry that their baby may not emerge from the situation happy and healthy. Sadly, some premature babies become quite ill during their hospital stay, and some parents endure the worst possible outcome. Recently, a number of parents in a different state filed a lawsuit claiming hospital negligence after eight babies became ill and three of those babies died in a neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) after all were exposed to the same bacteria.
According to doctors at the hospital, the first baby died in August. The hospital has said that DNA testing confirmed the source of the illness as a bacteria called pseudomonas, which was traced to donor breast milk measuring equipment. The bacteria can be deadly for those with compromised immune systems. The lawsuit alleges that the hospital failed to inform parents about bacterial contamination in donor breast milk, even after warning signs emerged.
The attorney representing two families involved in the lawsuit has said that the hospital should not have allowed people to believe its NICU was safe. A spokesperson from the hospital has extended an apology to the affected families and has stated its commitment to provide support. Apparently, among other safety measures, the hospital moved to single-use, sterilized measurement equipment even prior to learning the bacteria source.
Losing a child is one of the most devastating events possible. The families involved in this situation are, undoubtedly, suffering a great deal of pain and grief that must be compounded by the fact that such an outcome may have been prevented if medical professionals had initiated appropriate safety measures earlier and disclosed the necessary facts. Often, people who feel they have been victims of hospital negligence, such as in this case, choose to pursue the matter in civil court. In Louisiana, an experienced medical malpractice attorney can be a valuable resource when exploring legal options.