A Gurnee, Illinois family had its Medical Malpractice verdict upheld against
the Erie Family Health Center. The Illinois Medical Malpractice Lawyers
at Crossen Kooi recently learned the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh
Circuit upheld the $29.1 million verdict in the lawsuit, Arroyo v. United
States. This case stems from an infection Christian Arroyo developed after
he was born in 2003. He is now a spastic quadriplegic with cerebral palsy.
Arroyo’s parents contend their son developed a common neonatal blood
infection not long after his birth. They allege physicians and nurses
at Erie Family Health Center, a clinic funded by the United States government,
did not treat their newborn for more than 12 hours. The Arroyos claim
this Medical Negligence led to irreversible brain damage in their son.
Last year, the Arroyos won their Medical Malpractice case. However, the
United States government appealed the multi-million dollar verdict. The
federal government claimed the lawsuit was not timely because Christian’s
parents waited two years to file a Medical Malpractice claim. However,
the Court of Appeals rejected that contention. The Arroyo’s attorney
argued the doctors never told the parents antibiotics could have prevented
Christian’s brain damage. The Arroyos didn’t find this out
until their next son was born and immediately given antibiotics. Thus,
the Arroyos attorney argued, the parents had no way of knowing medical
negligence occurred until the situation with their next son and the antibiotics
he was given.
The Arroyos say they are pleased with the Court’s decision and that
the monetary award will help them care for their son, Christian. Illinois
is one of several states that does not limit jury awards in most. Medical
Malpractice cases. At one time, Illinois did have such a limit, known
as a “cap.” This cap was implemented in 2005 and set a $500,000
limit on noneconomic damages in cases against doctors and a $1 million
cap against hospitals. The Illinois Supreme Court struck down that law
in February of last year claiming the law violated the separation of powers.
The Court said the law took away some of the power of judges and juries
to make decisions.
While Illinois’s Medical Negligence law does not limit damages, it
does set a time limit for when when Medical Malpractice claims can be
made. Of course, there are exceptions, but in general, a medical malpractice
claim must be made within two years of when the medical error occurred.
Experienced Illinois Medical Malpractice Lawyers can help a victim gather
the necessary evidence and information and file a medical malpractice
claim in the appropriate time period. If you or someone you love is suffering
from a medical error, contact the Medical Malpractice Attorneys at Crossen
Kooi for a FREE consultation.