Mission Viejo CA Medical Blunder: Newborn Mistakenly Given Morphine, Parents Sue

08/18/2010 // West Palm Beach, FL, USA // Sandra Quinlan // Sandra Quinlan

Mission Viejo, CA—A Southern California hospital faces a medical malpractice lawsuit in connection with the accidental administration of morphine to a newborn baby. The erroneous medical blunder occurred last year and prompted the California Department of Health (CDPH) to fine the hospital $50,000, according to an August 18, 2010 KTLA report.

Reports indicated Jessica Blischke prematurely gave birth to triplets via Caesarean section at Mission Hospital in Mission Viejo, Calif. on April 4, 2009. While Blischke was subsequently prescribed morphine to ease her postpartum pains, something went wrong when it came time to administer the potent medication.

Somehow Blischke and her daughter Taylee’s IVs were accidentally switched. Taylee was given 4 milligrams of morphine that was intended for her mother. Within moments, Taylee’s heartbeat allegedly dropped to unsafe levels, forcing doctors to intubate her so she could breath normally.

Nonetheless, the mix-up remained unnoticed even after tests revealed the presence of opiates in the newborn baby’s system. It was then that doctors allegedly pointed the finger Blischke, making it seem as if she were responsible for Taylee’s worsening condition.

The medical error was only brought to light after additional tests were performed on Taylee and her two sisters. Given that the other two infants tested negative for opiates, Mission Hospital personnel eventually recognized the medication mix-up.

After Mission Hospital was fined $50,000 by CDPH officials, it submitted a corrective plan with the state. To prevent future errors of the same nature, the hospital contended medications would no longer be administered in the neonatal intensive care unit.

While Taylee was reportedly “discharged in a healthy condition,” mediation is set to begin August 31 in Santa Ana.

The case continues.

Legal News Reporter: Sandra Quinlan– Legal News for California Medical Malpractice Attorneys.

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