The following blog entry is written from a defendant’s position as trial approaches. Reviewing this kind of briefing should help potential plaintiffs and clients better understand how parties in personal injury cases present such issues to the court.
It is worth noting that situations similar to those described in this birth injury case could just as easily occur at any of the healthcare facilities in the area, such as Kaiser Permanente, U.C. Davis Medical Center, Mercy, or Sutter.
(Please also note: the names and locations of all parties have been changed to protect the confidentiality of the participants in this medical malpractice case and its proceedings.)
Following the Supreme Court's holding in Baxter v. Superior Court (1977) 19 Cal.3d 461, the appellate court held such claims for loss of consortium by parents for an injury to a child are rejected. Id. 186 Cal.App.3d at 894. Thus, plaintiffs Karen and Thomas Smith cannot recover for any emotional distress regarding any concern for the child due to his alleged injuries or emotional distress for having to care for a child with the plaintiffs' alleged injuries, or an inability to conduct their normal activities. Any claim for emotional distress due to an impaired relationship are clearly not recoverable because such claims would be based upon a loss of filial consortium and are thus irrelevant. For more information you are welcome to contact Sacramento personal injury lawyer, Moseley Collins.
Dr. Woo and Dr. Brown met the standard of care in performing the ultrasounds on this low risk patient in the same manner as OB/GYNs throughout the community do in an office-based obstetrical practice. There was no indication to perform a basic ultrasound to look for fetal anomalies in this case. Dr. Woo and Dr. Brown were not required by the standard of care to take measurements nor were they required to refer plaintiff Nancy Smith to a perinatologist (sub-specialist). Further, plaintiff Nicholas Smith's hemimeganencephaly was not caused by the defendants, was not a result of the defendants' care and treatment, and the condition was not capable of prenatal diagnosis.