$50M awarded over birth defect; test said baby would be OK


#1

A King County jury awarded $50 million to a couple whose son was born with profound mental and physical disabilities after concluding that Valley Medical Center and LabCorp mishandled a genetic test.

After his severely disabled cousin was found to have a rare genetic defect called an “unbalanced chromosome translocation,” Brock Wuth discovered that any future children of his were at risk.

In fact, Brock and Rhea Wuth were told they had a 50-50 chance of having a child with that defect or a related translocation. So they sought genetic counseling and testing and carefully followed all the recommendations.

When Rhea Wuth became pregnant, genetic tests pronounced their unborn child normal.

seattletimes.com/html/localnews/2022438460_geneticverdictxml.html


#2

[quote=Suudy] A King County jury awarded $50 million to a couple whose son was born with profound mental and physical disabilities after concluding that Valley Medical Center and LabCorp mishandled a genetic test. After his severely disabled cousin was found to have a rare genetic defect called an “unbalanced chromosome translocation,” Brock Wuth discovered that any future children of his were at risk. In fact, Brock and Rhea Wuth were told they had a 50-50 chance of having a child with that defect or a related translocation. So they sought genetic counseling and testing and carefully followed all the recommendations. When Rhea Wuth became pregnant, genetic tests pronounced their unborn child normal. seattletimes.com/html/localne…erdictxml.html
[/quote]

Talk about blood money…

"Why did they award you fifty million dollars? "

"Because they denied me the ability to kill my defective son. "

Lord have mercy.

Posted from Catholic.com App for Android


#3

Even rabidly pro-choice people should be up in arms about this.

The fact of the matter is that these tests are not and CANNOT be 100% accurate. If too many doctors get sued for false negatives like this, which are completely unpreventable, then they’re all just going to elect not to do the test to protect themselves. And if something forces them to do the test, then a lot of them are going to take the opportunity to retire to protect themselves.

This is bad for everybody, no matter your stance on abortion.


#4

This is absolutely disgusting! I cannot believe that anyone would go to court in order to get money just because a test didn’t show their baby would be “defective” so they could murder him!


#5

Hate to get in the middle of the stone throwing, but isn’t it possible that this family needs the money for their son’s round-the-clock for life care?


#6

Apalling. I can’t even imagine what this has started.


#7

It certainly will be expensive, but the doctors didn’t cause the defect. Would the alternative have been better?


#8
  1. Isn’t Obamacare supposed to fix that?

  2. Do they give $50 million to every family who decides to keep their child knowing the outcome of that decision, or just the families who would rather kill Jr. instead?


#9

That’s still no reason to murder anyone.


#10

Perhaps, but if that was all it was, this seems a poor and dishonest way to go about getting the money.

What concerns me about stories like this is that in encourages erring on the side of saying there’s something wrong just to avoid getting sued.


#11

Very good point


#12

I didn’t say the doctors themselves were at fault, but protocol wasn’t followed. The hospital and the lab bobbled the ball. I’m not saying $50M was reasonable, though. And I am certainly **not **saying that abortion would have been better.


#13
  1. I don’t pretend to know anything about the ACA.
  2. Who are “they”?

#14

No one was murdered :confused:


#15

I don’t know how much dishonesty was involved on the part of the parents. If it were my child, I would look for any legal/medical loophole–which was found in this case–to try to allay the cost of his or her lifetime medical care. I’m not a fan of frivolous lawsuits, and I don’t necessarily agree with the settlement. But if you have a severely ill child, you have to take care of it, and you need cash to do so. The real world…


#16

It seems that the problem with most in utero genetic testing is the implicit reason: if the child is defective, he can be aborted. Why do the test if that is not the reason? Genetic defects cannot be cured in utero.


#17

I’m not defending this decision or the parent’s arguments AT ALL, but I don’t think your conclusions follow from the facts of the case.

The incorrect test result here was completely preventable. The hospital failed to send the correct info (the “road map”) over to the lab and the lab failed to place a follow-up phone call to check on the info, as they are supposed to. If either side had done their job, the test result would have been correct.

So I don’t see how this case would result in doctors not doing the test or retiring to protect themselves. I do see hospitals and labs being more vigilant in following their own procedures to prevent this in the future.

This sure is one horrible story though. I mean, if everyone had done their jobs, then the test would have been right, and one more child would have been killed :frowning:


#18

Really? It wasn’t the doctor’s fault that the child has problems. It wasn’t the hospital’s fault that the child has problems. It wasn’t the lab’s fault that the child has problems. Why should they pay? Lawsuits like this are part of the problem we have with medical care in this country.

If the parents had not had the test done, would the doctors/hospital/lab be responsible for paying for the care of the child?

The alternative was to kill the child.

Peace

Tim


#19

Yet another example of:

  1. the stupidity of the medical litigation system - you have too much in the West, too little in the East
  2. the moral bankruptcy of those who bring such suits (“Waah! We couldn’t have an abortion, so give us the $$$ instead!” Sweet. Very sweet.)
  3. the unreliability of diagnostic testing in tricky cases.

Can we have more precise details on the nature of the genetic anomaly?

(Disclaimer: I’m asthmatic, short-sighted, and not too pretty to look at, so I’d be the first to go in any sort of eugenics programme. Talk about a conflict of interest.) :smiley:


#20

Well since they are calling this a “wrongful birth” case, that certainly would have been the alternative.


DISCLAIMER: The views and opinions expressed in these forums do not necessarily reflect those of Catholic Answers. For official apologetics resources please visit www.catholic.com.