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Infants Died After Being Fed Infected Breast Milk

Photo of Imrana Manzanares

Abel Cepeda, then 5-days-old, was the eighth baby since the summer to get sick after being exposed to bacteria in Geisinger Medical Center's NICU. Two infants had died prior to Abel's birth. Geisinger has announced that the hospital's equipment contaminated donor breast milk, which exposed premature infants to pseudomonas, a bacterium. The day Abel died, the hospital changed its equipment to single-use materials. Abel's parents have filed suit.

A spokesman for the hospital has said that the facility's breast milk measurement equipment has long been "thoroughly washed by hand" before re-use. In September, the hospital took "several proactive measures," which included moving to single-use, sterilized measurement materials.

According to the petition, Abel was given antibiotics before his death because "they knew that they had placed [him] at a constant, heightened risk of contracting a Pseudomonas infection every day that he remained" in the NICU. The lawsuit also stated it was not until October that a physician mentioned pseudomonas and the fact that there had been two other infant deaths.

When someone is injured or dies due to a health care provider's negligence, financial recovery may be available. Such recovery is particularly important when permanent, life changing injuries are incurred. It is important to contact someone who understands the intricacies of the party's right to recover.

Medical malpractice is a difficult area of law as it requires an understanding of both the legal practice and the mechanics of medicine. Abraham Watkins offers a free consultation to anyone wishing to pursue such claims.

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