Baby's parents file malpractice suit

October 10, 1997


Staff Writer

A Glen Burnie, Md., couple Tuesday filed a suit against a Washington County health organization and a doctor who allegedly botched the delivery of their baby last summer.

The suit, filed in Washington County Circuit Court, claims that Dr. Maxime Moise's incompetence led to the death of John and Frances Sonntag's newborn baby boy on June 6, 1996. The suit names Moise, Antietam Health Services Inc. and the Robinwood Medical Center Limited Partnership.

Beth Kirkpatrick, a spokeswoman for the Washington County Hospital Association, said it is policy not to comment on pending litigation.

The suit contends the doctor erred in the following ways:

* Opting for a vaginal delivery even though the preferred method of delivery of a breech baby is a Caesarean section. The suit also noted that Sonntag had a high-risk pregnancy due to three prior miscarriages.


* Attempting to extract the baby too soon.

"He decided to perform a breech extraction which was contrary to the standard of care and was negligent," the suit states.

* Mismanaging the extraction. The suit alleges that Moise failed to properly support the baby's body and did not use the forceps properly.

* Failing to abandon vaginal delivery in favor of a Caesarean delivery.

The suit asks for damages in excess of $20,000 for negligence. A second count, demanding damages in excess of $20,000, alleges that the Sonntags suffered harm to their marital relationship.

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