Twenty-year-old Evie Toombes is set to receive millions in compensation after she won a “wrongful conception” case against her mother’s doctor.
Tombees, who lives with a spinal defect argued that the doctor failed to advise her mother to postpone conception to a later date.
As a result of the wrongful advice, the showjumper was born and has to live in pain and agony for the rest of her life
A showjumper who lives with a spinal defect has got into the books of history for suing a doctor and winning millions in damages over “wrongful conception.”
Evie Toombes sued her mother’s doctor over claims that he failed to advise her against conceiving at that time, something that would have saved her the agony of being born with spina bifida.
Spina bifida is a neural tube defect (NTD) that affects the spine and makes it impossible for the backbone that protects the spinal cord to form and close all the way as it should. This often results in damage to the spinal cord and nerves, leading to physical and intellectual disabilities.
Tombees argued that if Dr Philip Mitchell had taken it upon himself to advise her mother accordingly, the pregnancy would have been postponed.
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“I was advised that if I had a good diet previously, I would not have to take folic acid,” Tombees’ mother told the court.
In essence, if the family doctor had informed her mother that she needed to take folic acid supplements to mitigate against the risk of giving birth to a baby with spina bifida, the pain she lives with now would have been avoided.
The 20-year-old disclosed that the spinal defect means that there are days she spends 24 hours connected to tubes.
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History was made in the “wrongful conception” case after the court ruled in her favor, giving her the go-ahead to claim millions in damages.
“If Evie’s mother had been provided with the correct recommended advice, she would have delayed attempts to conceive,” Judge Rosalind Coe QC ruled.
The judge added that if the conception would have been pushed to a later date, the mother would have given birth to a normal healthy child.
Payout sum not calculated yet
Tombees’ lawyers revealed that the payout figure is yet to be calculated, but it is bound to be in millions as it is meant to cover the cost of her lifelong care needs.
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The verdict will remain a landmark ruling as it means that going forward, healthcare professionals stand liable for their advice when it comes to matters of conception especially if the baby is born with health problems.