Suit alleges midwife malpractice
HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - Two-year-old Makaio Drake still can't walk or sit up on his own after suffering a severe brain injury at child birth.
A new lawsuit filed in state Circuit Court on Monday alleges that the midwife who supervised Makaio's natural birth botched the delivery.
The case has prompted calls for reforming the way natural childbirths are conducted in Hawaii.
"I'm bringing this lawsuit because I don't want other babies and parents to go through what Makaio and I had to go through in this experience," said the boy's mother Margaret Drake.
The suit names local naturopath Lori Kimata, who heads a company called Sacred Healing Arts Center LLC. It alleges that Kimata failed to show up at Drake's home until two days after her contractions began.
The suit also claims that Kimata was unaware that the baby was in respiratory distress because she failed to use a fetal heart monitor.
"When you deliver a baby, the supervisor doctor or naturopath cannot be 80 percent right or 90 percent right, they need to be 100 percent correct," said Richard Turbin, the Drake's attorney.
Kimata did not return calls to her office.
According to Turbin, Kimata told his client that she handled about 600 natural child births in Hawaii. She also said she was a licensed midwife, even though no such license exists in Hawaii, Turbin said.
Some state lawmakers say the business of midwifery should be better regulated.
"Anyone who is going to deliver babies should have a professional relationship with an OB/GYN, board certified, because when complications arise during delivery, there's very very little room for error," said state Sen. Josh Green, chair of the Senate Committee on Health
In the lawsuit, the Drakes are seeking unspecified damages, mostly to cover the cost of Makaio's future care.
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