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$13,900,000 Awarded to a girl who suffered brain damage when doctors delayed performing a C-Section

Case: Cobbs v. Shipman

Parties:
Plaintiff (Appellee) - mother Debra Cobb individually and as parent and guardian of daughter Haley Cobb
Defendant (Appellant) - Doctor Tara Shipman

Court: Court of Common Pleas, Trumbull County, Ohio

Procedural History

Debra and Haley Cobb sued Dr. Tara Shipman on a medical negligence theory alleging that Dr. Shipman acted below the standard of care during the labor and delivery process, directly causing Haley’s brain damage and consequent cerebral palsy.

Summary of Facts

In Warren, Ohio 10 year old Haley Cobb, who suffers with cerebral palsy, brought a medical malpractice suit against the doctor who delivered her along with her mother Debra.  The lawsuit focused on the doctor’s decision not to perform a Cesarean section.  This decision led to Haley not receiving enough oxygen to her brain.  She was left with a brain injury, and ultimately cerebral palsy.  Experts testified that the doctor erred by continuing to give Mrs. Cobb drugs to induce contractions after Haley showed signs of not being able to tolerate them. Trumbull Tribune Chronicle.

Outcome at Trial

The jury found Dr. Shipman liable for medical malpractice, awarding Haley Cobbs $13.9 million in damages.

Issues on Appeal

Jurors had to decide whether Dr. Shipman failed to provide proper care for Haley and Debra and whether she was responsible for Haley's injuries. Jurors also had to decide whether Haley and her parents should be compensated for her injuries, and if so, how much they should receive. Trumbull Tribune Chronicle.

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