Court Affirms $10 Million Verdict for Failure to Diagnose Infant Bacterial Meningitis

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failure to diagnose infant bacterial meningitisAn Appellate Court in Pennsylvania recently upheld an over $10 million verdict in a medical malpractice case against the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia and one of its doctors, for failure to timely diagnose a case of infant bacterial meningitis. The delayed diagnosis of meningitis in this case resulted in severe injuries to the young victim, who now suffers from hearing loss and developmental delays, among other health problems.

If you need help with a claim against a doctor or hospital that failed to diagnose meningitis in your infant or child, call our experienced malpractice attorneys in NJ for a free consultation: (973)-435-4551. Our team is available immediately to assist you. 

This medical malpractice claim, Tillery v. Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, was brought on behalf of the victim, Shamir D. Tillery, who was 11 months old when he was brought to the emergency room at the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia multiple times over the course of three days in 2009. During his first visit, on December 21, he had a fever and was having trouble breathing. Shamir was diagnosed with an upper respiratory infection, with possible but less likely pneumonia, and sent home.

The next day, he returned to the hospital with more severe symptoms, including high fever, irritability, elevated heart rate, dehydration, and lethargy. He was examined by the attending physician, Dr. Goyal, who ordered chest x-rays and ruled out pneumonia and viral upper respiratory infections as potential underlying conditions. Dr. Goyal failed to order any additional diagnostic tests and recommended that Shamir should return to the emergency room if his condition worsened.

Shamir was brought again to hospital the next day and another doctor ordered a lumbar puncture. After three hours of waiting, the lumbar puncture was finally completed, after which the child was diagnosed with infant bacterial meningitis. He was subsequently diagnosed with bilateral hearing loss and childhood brain damage. Shamir now suffers from  hearing loss, cognitive difficulties, developmental delays, and a loss of balance due to bone growth that affected his vestibular nerve.

In 2015, a Philadelphia jury awarded the victim $10.1 million, finding the Children’s Hospital 60 percent liable and Dr. Monika Goyal 40 percent liable. The hospital appealed the verdict, saying that with delayed damages and interest, the total award now exceeds $12 million. The appellants took issue with the qualifications and testimony of the plaintiff’s experts. However, the three-judge panel recently ruled that the verdict should stand. Ultimately, the delayed diagnosis of meningitis resulted in permanent harm to an innocent boy who was forced to pay the price for medical negligence.

Contact our New Jersey Infant Meningitis Lawyers to Discuss Your Case

At Fronzuto Law Group, our New Jersey medical malpractice lawyers aggressively advocate for victims of failure to diagnose meningitis, pediatrician malpractice, hospital negligence, and birth injuries across New Jersey. With a firm that concentrates on the complex realm of medical malpractice litigation, we have accumulated a wealth of knowledge and experience in this area, which we use every day to obtain maximum compensation for our clients. If you or someone you love suffered harm as a result of medical negligence in New Jersey, contact our offices today at 973.435.4551 to discuss your potential claim. Our highly knowledgeable lawyers provide consultations free of charge.

For additional information pertaining to this case, access the following article: Superior Court Upholds $10M Award Against CHOP

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