$750,000 Settlement in Birth Injury Case

2017 Settlement

Totally disabled child, age 10, recovers $750,000.00 from defendants, a Nurse Midwife and a Pediatrician practicing at Mercy Medical Center of Springfield, MA as compensation for medical mistakes of delayed delivery and immediate post birth pediatric errors that occurred on October 12, 2006.

On the morning of October 12, 2006, Russian born Aziza Radzhabova, age 26, presented at Mercy Medical Center Emergency Room with complaints of her water breaking at nearly 40 weeks pregnant. The mother was assigned to Riverbend Medical Group employee Certified Nurse Midwife Brenda Maloney to manage and effectuate a vaginal birth. Most of the mother’s prenatal care was done in Russia. The Certified Nurse Midwife at the time was an employee of Riverbend Medical Group which also employed medical doctor obstetricians. Appropriate fetal heart monitoring of the baby by Certified Nurse Midwife Maloney should have caused the her, as alleged by the father, Isa Abuzarov, to turn the prenatal care and delivery immediately over to her fellow employee, a medical doctor. She did not do that. She continued on with the case until the baby was in an emergency state requiring her fellow employee of Riverbend Medical Group, an obstetrical doctor, to conduct an emergency C-section, which was uneventful.

Immediately thereafter, the baby girl needed pediatric intervention for airway difficulties. The pediatrician, Dr. Rebecca Rosenstein, an employee of Inpatient Pediatric Services and practicing at Mercy Medical center had difficulty accessing the airway which of course provided oxygen to the baby’s brain. The pediatrician allegedly unreasonably delayed calling for assistance from the doctors at Baystate Medical Center who, when finally called, arrived at Mercy Medical Center and were able to, unlike Dr. Rosenstein, within a minute access the airway. Both the defendants denied responsibility. 

The Plaintiff, Russian speaking only father Isa Abuzarov, alleged that both the delay in the delivery and the delay by the pediatrician in calling for help from Baystate Medical Center caused significant oxygen deprivation to the child’s brain causing significant permanent brain damage to the baby, Salvi.

Plaintiff would have presented testimony that the now 10 year old child will live 40-50 more years, require 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year care, and that such case based on expected testimony of an economist from Colorado would cost in today’s dollars $15,563,800.00 for medical and attendant care, excluding any amounts due to Salvi for pain and suffering, loss of earnings, and loss of enjoyment of life . 

A North Palm Beach, Florida doctor certified in Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation examined the child in North Palm Beach, Florida and would have based his testimony on her future care on his personal examination of Salvi, now age 10, and his education background,  training, and multi-state experience presenting such evidence as an expert, including in Massachusetts, testifying on future health care and custodial needs only. Aziza Radzhabova, a native born Russian speaking mother, stated that her and her husband tried to find help but could get no legal help from attorneys in the greater western Massachusetts area. Ms. Radzhabova found Attorneys Frederic N. and Ingrid A. Halström of Halström Law Offices, P.C. via the internet and the attorneys agreed to take the case on a contingent fee basis. On August 31, 2017 in Hampden Superior Court, Judge Mark D. Mason questioned the lawyers and Salvi’s parents (through a Court certified Russian translator), and approved the settlement. 

English speaking Aziza, Salvi’s mother, said she and her husband appreciated the over $100,000.00 in case costs and expenses that were advanced to help Salvi’s legal case by Attorneys Halström of Halström Law Offices, P.C. of Worcester, Carlisle, Boston, and North Smithfield, RI. The parents could never have afforded to advance any money to prosecute their child’s claim. 

Due to the delay experienced by the parents, over three years, in finding an experienced medical negligence lawyer who would advance the considerable case expenses for experts, depositions, etc. and accept a contingent fee arrangement, the parents’ claims were time barred. The only recovery was by Salvi, through her father as her guardian. The parents themselves received no recovery and all of Salvi’s recovery was placed in a Special Needs Trust not controlled by the parents but by a legal trustee, approved by the Superior Court.

The amount of money recovered, while a small fraction of the funds needed to provide the necessary care, medical treatments, and custodial care for Salvi’s future survival, is at least some money now available in a trust for Salvi’s special needs. Judge Mark D. Mason approved the settlement proffered by Salvi, represented by her father Isa Abuzarov and Attorneys Halström on their behalf. Lawyers representing the Certified Nurse Midwife and Pediatrician and their medical malpractice insurers urged the settlement be approved by the Court, as did Guardian ad Litem Thomas Kenefick, Esq. of Springfield, MA. 

The case name is Salvi Abuzarova PPA, vs. Rebecca J. Rosenstein and Brenda Maloney, Hampden Superior Court Docket No. 1279CV01026.

Halstrom Law Offices, P.C. attorneys Frederic Halstrom and Ingrid Halstrom represented the plaintiff in this matter.