A mother in OR is suing Portland Adventist Medical Center for $8.6 million after she accidentally smothered her four-day-old baby in a hospital bed.
The lawsuit, filed Friday, claims Portland Adventist Medical Center was negligent in medicating Monica Thompson and leaving her unsupervised with her infant son, Jacob, for a session of late-night breastfeeding in her hospital bed, KATU reported. He was 10 days old.
The grieving mother alleged that the hospital is at fault after nurses brought the baby into her room to breastfeed at around 3 a.m., after she was heavily medicated with Ambien and Vicodin.
About an hour later, the breastfeeding mother was "still drowsy and groggy" when she realized her son had stopped moving.
"She called for a nurse while she tried to get him to respond..."
However, she fell asleep with her baby next to her and accidentally suffocated him. The spokesperson also did not comment about the hospital's policy on newborns and bed sharing.
Mrs Thompson is seeking compensation for the baby's "desperation and anxiety" and her own "severe emotional distress upon unintentionally killing her firstborn child". But Thompson said in a statement that "Jacob was a true miracle baby". She dozed off and woke to find her son wasn't breathing.
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Kristi Spurgeon Johnson, a spokeswoman for Portland Adventist Medical Center, said Wednesday she couldn't comment on the lawsuit until the hospital has had a chance to review it. She said they were unable to provide any additional information at the time.
When Jacob was stabilized he was transported to Legacy Randall Children Hospital's Neonatal Intensive Care Unit for critical care.
The lawsuit says Jacob was born via C-section and was a healthy baby boy with no conditions. She says that night, in particular, she was given a combination of narcotic painkillers and sleep aids to help her sleep while her son was under the care of nurses.
Due to the extensive lack of oxygen the baby boy endured, he suffered significant brain damage, the Daily Mail reports. I am sharing our story in the hopes that no mother or family will ever have to suffer through a tragedy such as this.
"Jacob suffocated under his mother while she was under the influence of narcotics and sleep aids", her lawsuit reads. Mrs. Thompson tried to stimulate her son's suckling reflexes without success.
They also recommend placing babies in the same room where the parents sleep but not the same bed, breastfeeding as much and as for long as mothers can (reduces risks of SIDS), keeping babies away from smokers and places where people smoke, and keeping the baby at comfortable temperatures as hot temperatures increase the risk of SIDS.