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The Plaintiffs’ infant son became ill with a fever and was not acting normally. The parents called an emergency telephone line to the hospital of the child’s pediatrician for assistance. The hotline is run by nurses who give advice on how to handle situations, request that patients come to the emergency room, or schedule appointments during physician hours. During the plaintiffs’ call, it was not recommended their child go to the emergency room. The next day, the Plaintiff took his child to the emergency room, due to continued symptoms. The child was examined, treated, and released with a diagnosis of a viral illness.
Over the next several days, the child continued to have a fever and was not himself. He began vomiting and had an episode where he would not respond to his parents. After another call to the emergency telephone line, the Plaintiff was instructed on home care. Three days later, the child had a seizure and was taken to the emergency room.
At the emergency room, the child was diagnosed with Herpes Symplex Virus or HSV, and was started on an anti-viral drug. The child left the hospital with brain damage and the inability to speak.