Six mothers sue Health

2015-11-18 08:09


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Pietermaritzburg - Six more damages claims adding up to a combined total of over R76,2 million have been lodged in the Pietermaritzburg high court against the MEC for Health in KwaZulu-Natal.

The cases came before high court Judge Gregory Kruger yesterday when it was requested that the health authorities provide the claimants with relevant documents and records, which was granted.

Trial dates have not yet been allocated.

Five of the damages claims involve allegations that mothers-to-be were subjected to unnecessary and prolonged labour at different state hospitals when birth by Caesarean section was called for.

In four of the cases the babies were eventually delivered via Caesarean but by the time they were born they allegedly suffered from asphyxia, ultimately resulting in cerebral palsy.

The children are all allegedly irreparably brain damaged due to the negligence of medical staff.

In one case, Philisiwe Cele is claiming R12,2 million on behalf of her child, Lwandile, born at Murchison Hospital near Port Shepstone on May 20, 2010. It is alleged that staff at the hospital clinic had failed to advise her correctly and monitor her condition and that of her baby adequately, after she was diagnosed to be anaemic and hypertensive prior to the birth.

Court papers allege that Cele was not referred to a doctor, nor advised to return to the clinic within a week to monitor her condition.

Following her admission to hospital to give birth, staff were also allegedly negligent and failed to monitor her and the baby’s condition, and failed to resuscitate the baby after birth.

Due to his disabilities, Lwandile cannot sit or talk, suffers from seizures, will depend on people for life, and will require specialised equipment, communication devices and special schooling.

Jabulile Mbatha (on behalf of Lindelo Mbatha, who was born on August 27, 2006) and Florence Ndebele (on behalf of her daughter, Seluleko Mnguni, born on May 26, 2011) are both claiming just over R12,8 million arising from the alleged negligence of medical staff at Charles Johnson Memorial Hospital at Nquthu, which resulted in their children suffering from cerebral palsy.

Damages claims for the same amount have also been lodged in respect of Angel Sithole (on behalf of her daughter, Nkosingiphile, born on February 16, 2006 at KwaDabeka community health centre hospital in the eThekwini area); Sinothile Ngubane (on behalf of Sbusisiwe Ngubane, born on December 1, 2011 at Gunjaneni Clinic at Mtubatuba); and Ziphokazi Mtolo (on behalf of Obo Unathi Mtolo born at Rietvlei hospital near Greytown on October 5, 2011).

According to court papers, the babies born to Mbatha, Ndebele, Sithole and Ngubane were all delivered via C-section after the women had been subjected to prolonged labour.

Mtolo gave birth naturally.

Each of the children is alleged to be permanently disabled as a result of the prolonged labour and negligent treatment of the mothers and babies by the medical staff.

Read more on:    pietermaritzburg  |  health department  |  court

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