Can we recover damages if our child’s cerebral palsy was caused by a medical mistake?

When a child is diagnosed with a disability like cerebral palsy, parents can feel overwhelmed. In addition to addressing important medical issues, parents may be worried about paying for their child’s expensive care. The Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimates that the care of a person with cerebral palsy will be approximately $1 million during his lifetime.

If you feel your child’s cerebral palsy is the result of medical negligence by the doctor, nurse, or other hospital staff, it is possible to recover damages—money the law requires a party to pay for a breach of duty. While every case is different, it may be possible to be awarded compensation for:

  • Medical expenses. A child with cerebral palsy requires doctor or hospital visits, tests, medication, surgeries, and other medical care.
  • Medical equipment and devices. Depending on the severity of the disability, it can be necessary to modify a home or car. Children can also require special equipment fitted to their individual needs such as wheelchairs or crutches.
  • Future medical expenses. Children diagnosed with cerebral palsy will require a lifetime of care. Caregivers will need to plan for the future, as well as address current medical needs.
  • Physical therapy. A variety of physical treatments can both provide comfort and strengthen muscles.
  • Mental health support. The mental and emotional stresses of living with a disability can increase, especially as the child grows older. Mental health specialists can contribute to the child’s sense of well-being and general mental health.
  • Occupational therapy. Therapists can work with children to create and foster as much independence and self-care as possible.
  • Speech therapy. Speech therapy can help a child strengthen mouth muscles and tongue. This can both improve communication and aid in feeding. This is important as up to 35 percent of children with cerebral palsy are malnourished.
  • Punitive damages. Considered punishment for the liable party, these damages can be awarded against the doctor, hospital, or other provider responsible for the disability.

Compensation can provide families with some relief from the stresses that accompany raising a child with a disability and be vital in helping the child live a happy, productive life. Not all cases of cerebral palsy are preventable, but it is important to determine if a medical mistake was made. If your child’s cerebral palsy was avoidable, you are entitled to compensation. Contact us at 855-522-5291 to discuss your case.