$20 Million Awarded To Boy Left Blind After Birth
A Montgomery County jury awarded $20 million in damages to a 6-year-old boy who was left blind shortly after birth as a result of medical negligence.
Emmitt Lee was born prematurely in June 2000 and subsequently developed an eye disease common in premature babies. Pediatric ophthalmologist Harold Koller examined Lee soon after his birth. Lee was supposed to see Koller again on August 8.
Dr. Ara Moomjian, head of the neonatology unit at Abington Memorial Hospital, discharged Lee that day and told his parents to call Koller to make an appointment. Lee’s parents called Koller’s office the next day and were told to bring the baby in on August 30.
“The parents were never told this was an urgent matter,” said Shanin Specter, attorney for the family.
By the time Lee went back to the ophthalmologist, he was already blind. The jury ruled that the hospital was 60 percent liable for Lee’s injury, Moomjian 35 percent, Koller four percent and Lee’s pediatrician one percent.
The verdict is believed to be one of the largest ever handed down in the Philadelphia suburb.
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