Largest Jury Verdicts of 2011

As reported by Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly, January 23, 2012

Lubin & Meyer Achieves One of
5 Largest Verdicts of 2011 in Massachusetts

Lubin & Meyer again is recognized for having achieved a top jury verdict for the year as reported by Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly. The verdict, a $7.05 jury verdict, Bellerose v. Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, was the only medical malpractice case in the Top 5 verdicts. (Note: The trial report for this lawsuit is available here— the final payment amount with interest was $11.48 million.)

An excerpt follows…

In June 2004, 28-year-old South Hamilton resident... gave birth to twin daughters ... at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center. Eight days later, [one] was dead from a bowel disorder most often found in premature or sick babies.

It was a preventable death, according to her mother, who brought a medical-malpractice suit against a group of doctors and nurses, alleging wrongful death and contending that hospital staff did not pay close enough attention as [the infant] suffered and ultimately died from necrotizing enterocolitis, commonly referred to as NEC.

In August 2011, a Suffolk Superior Court jury, after deliberating for seven-and-a-half hours over two days, found one doctor ... and one nurse practitioner, ... negligent and awarded the plaintiffs $50,000 for the baby’s conscious pain and suffering and $3.5 million each to the baby’s mother and father for their loss.

The plaintiffs said the signs for NEC, a condition characterized by the death of bowel tissue, were there, while the defendants maintained that there were no signs or symptoms. The defendants said the standards of medical care were met and that nothing could have been done to save Katherine.

The plaintiffs argued that since [the infanct] was pre-term—she and [her twin] were born premature at 30 weeks—she was a known risk for developing NEC.

Furthermore, [the infant] had patent ductus areriosus, a condition in infants that leads to abnormal blood flow, and was consequently treated with Indocin, a medication that, according to the plaintiffs, put her at additional risk for NEC. She was also fed through a tube that went through her nose to her stomach, which was another risk factor, the plaintiffs said.

“This case speaks to the value of a deceased child in modern times in Massachusetts and what a loss this was to the parents,” says William J. Thompson, who, along with Elizabeth Cranford from Boston’s Lubin & Meyer, represented the plaintiffs. “The jury heard the evidence over two weeks and concluded that this child should not have died.”

He says Bellerose “never wavered from her story,” and notes that her testimony differed from “all the defendants, and, in some significant ways, it also differed from the medical records.”

See related: Lubin & Meyer leads way with 35 of the largest medical malpractice settlements in Massachusetts in 2011

See also: Largest Jury Verdicts of 2011

See also: Largest Settlements 2010

See also: Largest Settlements 2009

See also: Largest Settlements 2008

See also: Top Verdicts 2008

See also: Top Verdicts 2007

See also: Largest Settlements 2007

See also: Largest Settlements in 2006

See also: Top Verdicts of 2005

See also: Largest Settlements in 2005

See also: Featured Verdicts of 2004

See also: Largest Settlements in 2003

Return to News index