A Saudi appeals court has upheld a ruling ordering a medical team to pay SR1 million in compensation to expatriate parents of a child with cerebral palsy blamed on a medical blunder at birth, a local newspaper has reported. The medical team, including an anesthesia specialist, were convicted of committing the blunder during the boy’s birth, leading to cerebal palsy that has resulted in motor disability of all his limbs, Okaz added.
Parents of the child, now aged three, had requested in their lawsuit 1 million riyals in compensation for the cost of their son’s medical treatment and rehabilitation, citing physical problems and muscular atrophy resulting from the medical error.
The boy’s father was quoted as saying in the suit that as parents, they have faced hardship over the past three years in their desperate efforts to reconcile their care for the child and their family with their work obligations.
They estimated medical fees at SR1 million, saying health insurance available to them does not cover basic needs. The boy’s medical treatment, the father said, is a lifetime process, including visits to neurology, orthopedics, dentistry, physiotherapy and speech therapy centres.
“This costs a fortune and is not covered by insurance, especially when it comes to necessary devices,” the father was quoted as saying. He also pointed to his son’s inability to lead a normal life and have access to education.
The ruling in the case, filed by the parents holding an Arab nationality, was issued after several hearings that culminated in convicting the medical team and the institution where they work and ordering them to pay SR1 million in compensation to the boy. The verdict is irreversible, according to the report.
“Mechanism of compensation cases is based on the court’s conviction that the claimant is entitled to damages,” said lawyer Ahmed Al Rashed. “This depends on evidence that proves the claimant’s right to the requested compensation and its value,” he added.
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