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B.C. mom of disabled boy sues health authority, doctors over son's birth

After her son sustained life-altering injuries, a Kamloops woman is suing Interior Health
A woman files a civil claim in B.C. Supreme Court in Kelowna on behalf of her son.

A Kamloops woman is suing Interior Health on behalf of her son who suffered life-altering injuries during birth, claiming doctors and nurses ought to have known she was too small to deliver without C-section.

Kari-Lyn Davies filed a notice of civil claim this week in B.C. Supreme Court in Kelowna, naming Interior Health, four doctors and a handful of nurses as defendants. The claim was filed by Davies on behalf of her son, Kaiden James Ling.

Davies gave birth to Ling on Aug. 18, 2011, at Kelowna General Hospital. According to her claim, she met with a doctor five days earlier and was told “a trial of labour was reasonable” despite her small frame and short stature. Davies stands about four-foot-eight.

“Shortly after birth, the plaintiff [Ling] began exhibiting seizure-like activity and was diagnosed with asphyxial insult and severe hypoxic brain injury,” the claim reads.

“The injuries were caused to the plaintiff during the last phase of labour where the decision was made to continue Davies’ labour without surgical or instrumental intervention.”

Davies visited Kelowna General Hospital on three occasions in the 48 hours leading up to the birth. The first two times, she was examined and released after complaining of pain and contractions. She was admitted to hospital on the third visit, about six hours before Ling was delivered.

Davies’ claim alleges the injuries to Ling could have been avoided with a C-section. The claim also alleges that the injuries could have been caused by a ruptured placenta, “which ought to have been known to the defendant doctors and defendant nurses present during Davies’ labour.”

Davies claims healthcare staff were negligent by failing to inform her of the risks of attempting vaginal delivery, as well as failing to advise her of the likely need for a C-section, among other allegations.

Ling’s injuries — a severe brain injury resulting in physical and cognitive impairment — means he will be dependant on others for life, the claim states.

Physicians named as defendants are Dr. Karen Ann Meathreal, Dr. Bronwyn Hautala, Dr. Derek Bryant and a John or Jane Doe. Nurses named as defendants are J. Turner, Megan Hallock, Carol Bachtold, S. Reiter and three John or Jane Does.

Once served, the defendants will have three weeks to file a response.

None of the allegations in the claim have been proven in court.