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$30 Million Medical Malpractice Verdict Awarded to Brain Damaged Boy

A 17-year old Cleveland boy was awarded $30 million for brain damage sustained at birth. The jury ruled that the doctors failed to give Walter Hollins, who now has the mental capacity of a 1-year old, and his mother proper care when she was going through a difficult labor.

Witnesses testified that the flow of oxygen to Walter's brain was cut off while his mother, Regina Harris, waited for more than two hours to undergo emergency Cesarean section at the now-defunct Mt. Sinai Medical Center in 1987. Walter has cerebral palsy and is unable to use his arms or legs. The condition is incurable.

"No amount of money can change the way my son is today," said Harris, a single mother and sole caregiver of Walter. "But this will definitely help me to be the best mother that I can be, and I am very grateful to the jury."

Attorney Geoffrey Fieger had sought $35 million, and described the circumstances of Walter's birth some of the worst he's ever seen. Joseph Farchione, the attorney for Dr. Ronald Jordan, said he would appeal the verdict, claiming that it is not supported by evidence and that the injuries "developed in utero well before the delivery."

Although Mt. Sinai is no longer in business, a $77 million insurance fund is available to be tapped for damages.

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