• The 37 Military Hospital is to pay the family of a 27-year-old woman an amount of GH¢1m and over in damages
• Helena Brema Nyamekye bled to death after doctors at the Hospital went against her choice for a CS in childbirth
• The judge on the case ruled that the Hospital was liable for the negligence of its staff
An amount of GH¢1,075,000, in damages, has been slapped on the 37 Military Hospital.
This, according to a report by citinewsroom.com, is for the negligence it caused the bereaved family of a 27-year-old woman during childbirth in November 2015.
The father and husband of the deceased are each to be paid GHs400,000.00 for loss of expectations of life, while GH¢50,000.00 in damages of mental distress is also to be paid to them by the Hospital.
The baby, Yaw Nyamekye, is to receive GH¢100,000.00 in damages for pain and suffering, the General Jurisdiction 6 Division of the High Court ruled.
Additionally, Yaw Nyamekye, who suffered disfigurement on his right arm, will be paid an extra GH¢50,000.00 in damages, while GH¢50,000.00 in damages will be paid to primary caregivers of the child, the report added.
At the time of her death, Helena Brema Nyamekye, who was a PhD student at the University of Ghana, is said to have opted for a caesarean section during childbirth but doctors denied her the option.
Instead, they put her through normal labour, leading to her bleeding profusely at the theatre, eventually killing her.
Captain Nyamekye (Rtd), who is the husband of the deceased, as well as the father of the deceased subsequently sued the 37 Military Hospital for damages for loss of life, trauma and negligence, as well as general damages.
Defending the case in court, the doctors stated that Helena Brema Nyamekye had earlier agreed to a vaginal delivery upon medical advice, and only changed her mind and opted for a caesarean section later, and rather too late.
Unable to go with her eleventh-hour decision, the doctors decided to go with her initial choice for childbirth but the court established, from evidence available to it, that the request for a CS was made on the morning of November 11, 2015, and as such, cannot pass for the reason that it was a late call.
Justice Kwaku Tawiah Ackaah-Boafo, who sat on the case, explained that the Hospital did not give any “plausible or reasonable explanation” as to why the request for a CS was not met.
The trial judge also explained how he had observed that though the doctors were experts in the field, and who should have known what was best for the deceased, during the deceased’s labour, there were no doctors or house officers present to review the process.
This, the judge added, accounted for no proper monitoring of the patient.
Details also showed that the deceased, in her lifetime, suffered High Blood Pressure, with the doctors being very aware of this but still allowed her to go through the more strenuous process of childbirth for someone in such a condition.
“Her death was a preventable one. The only logical confusion the court ought to come to is that the deceased died out of injuries caused her,” Justice Ackaah-Boafo said.
Also, the judge observed that the blood that was requested to the theatre during the process and was subsequently delivered was not used.
In his conclusion, Justice Kwaku Tawiah Ackaah-Boafo said the doctors and nurses on the patient were negligent in the discharge of their duties.
By that, the court found the 37 Military Hospital liable for negligence of its staff which accounted for the death of the 27-year-old.
In his ruling, Justice Kwaku Tawiah Ackaah-Boafo also lamented the increasing cases of lack of attention in medical facilities in the country, admonishing health caregivers to be extra professional in their work.