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Parents take action against reported hospital negligence

New Orleans parents often face legal challenges regarding substandard medical care. A recent situation in another state has resulted in a hospital negligence lawsuit being filed by parents of a minor. The patient involved is a 17-year-old girl who was ordered into state custody three years ago. Her parents reportedly aggressively fought for her return home, which took place when a judge ruled in their favor in 2014.

The girl's parents have now filed a legal claim against the hospital and several doctors whose testimonies allegedly led to the court's placing their child into state custody in 2013. The mother and father have claimed that hospital staff and state officials violated their parental rights to make medical decisions on behalf of their child. The parents have also stated that while in state custody, their daughter was denied an education and was also prohibited from attending the church services of her faith.

The girl apparently suffers from a mitochondrial disorder that led her parents to seek emergency care at Children's Hospital for gastrointestinal problems. Prior to that, she had been receiving ongoing treatment at another medical center. The staff at Children's claimed the girl was being medically abused. Her parents expressed their shock when a court agreed, placing their daughter in a locked psychiatric ward. 

The experience was obviously emotionally and financially taxing on the family. The couple has said that they have filed the hospital negligence claim in hopes that it will protect other families from suffering such horrors in the future. Any New Orleans parent considering similar legal action on a child's behalf can begin the process by contacting a medical malpractice attorney to discuss the situation.

Source: The Boston Globe, "Parents of Justina Pelletier sue Boston Children's Hospital", Michael Levenson, Feb. 25, 2016

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