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Tennessee Doctor Sued for Leaving New Born Baby for Dead in Hospital

The birth of a child is an event that for the mother should be one of the most cherished memories of her life. However, for one Tennessee mother, this date of her child’s birth marks one of the most terrible and devastating days of her life. This is so, because according to the mother, instead of providing her and her new born child with the necessary care that was required, the doctor who delivered her baby neglected giver her new born baby any care at all.

According to the Tennessean.com, a Robertson County, Tennessee mother, Jennifer Marie Marlin, acting on behalf of her child, is suing the doctor that delivered him for medical malpractice. The lawsuit claims that Matthew Allen Marlin, who is now a toddler, was left for dead in a plastic bin for more than four hours before a nurse noticed he was alive and gasping for breath. Marlin’s mother filed the lawsuit in late December 2011 against Dr. John W. O’Donnell III in Robertson County Circuit Court. According to the lawsuit, baby Marlin was born early June 13, 2009, with irregular gasping breaths and heart rate. Also according to the lawsuit, a nurse noted that he “made a small cry at delivery and had movement of arms and legs.”

The lawsuit, which claims that Dr. O’Donnell is guilty of negligence, goes on to state that “The baby was fighting for his life and Dr. O’Donnell decided on his own – without any consultation from anyone else – that the baby had no chance of living.” The Tennessean.com reports that Marlin was put in a plastic bin and left on a counter “until the family could decide what to do with the body,” but a nurse who passed the area noticed he was gasping for breath a few hours later.

After a nurse discovered that baby Marlin was indeed alive and struggling to survive, baby Marlin received resuscitation therapy and was transferred from NorthCrest Medical Center in Springfield, Tennessee to Vanderbilt University Medical Center in Nashville. Baby Marlin remained at Vanderbilt University Medical Center for three months where he received specialized care for the brain injuries and other injuries he had sustained.

Marlin’s lawsuit claims that O’Donnell was negligent and that Marlin suffered a brain injury and other injuries and damages because the doctor did not provide “timely and appropriate diagnosis, intervention, treatment, and care.” According to Randy Kinnard, the Nashville medical malpractice attorney who represents Marlin and his mother, Jennifer Marie Marlin, “In the complaint, we claim that a pediatrician should have been called immediately to resuscitate the baby, and the baby should have been sent to a neonatal intensive care unit. That did not happen.”

Fortunately for all of the other expectant mothers in the Springfield, Tennessee areas, officials at NorthCrest Medical Center said Dr. O’Donnell no longer works there. Although O’Donnell has no history of medical malpractice claims or Board of Medical Examiners violations according to Tennessee Department of Health records, O’Donnell’s medical license expired in May.

This tragedy exemplifies the ultimate fear of expectant mothers, who only want the best possible care for their children. As a Georgia Medical Malpractice attorney, I sincerely feel for Ms. Marlin, and I hope that she and baby Marlin receive the compensation that they deserve for the suffering that this Doctor’s negligence put them through.