Attorneys Mark W. Tanner and James P. Faunes secured a $1.8 million settlement on behalf of the family of a newborn who died as a result of medical negligence. The child was born with signs of respiratory depression and was placed in defendant hospital’s neonatal intensive care unit (NICU). While there, the defendants placed an umbilical venous (UV) catheter in the child, but inserted the tip of the catheter too far into his body, allowing the tip to rest just inside the newborn’s heart. There the defendants allowed the UV catheter to remain, despite radiologic films demonstrating the misplacement, for four days. Over time, the catheter perforated the child’s heart wall, allowing liquid to fill the space around his heart. Ultimately, the newborn plummeted into cardiac and respiratory arrest, and could not be resuscitated.
The young, first-time parents asked repeatedly for an explanation from the hospital as to what went wrong. When no satisfactory answer was given, they retained attorneys Tanner and Faunes. The matter was extensively investigated and litigated in Philadelphia County, and on the eve of trial, the defendants offered $1.8 million to compromise the claim.