(Scroll down for video) Doctors mistakenly declared a living boy as dead, causing severe suffering for the child and his family, according to reports.
The parents of an 8-year-old boy, who had severe brain damage for years, have sued a Chicago, Illinois hospital, alleging that the doctors declared their son dead, keeping him off a ventilator for hours, even though the family continued to insist that the boy’s eyes and body are still moving.
The lawsuit filed this week by Sheena Lane and Pink Dorsey, on behalf of their son, Jaylen Dorsey, accuses the Mercy Hospital Medical Center of neglect after the February incident, and claims that about five hours passed before the staff performed a cardiac ultrasound, which showed Jaylen Dorsey’s heart is still beating.
"There was no need to be a doctor to see that his heart pumped blood," the child's father, Pink Dorsey, said in a press conference on Friday.
The hospital denies the allegations in the lawsuit, and said in a written statement that Jaylen came to the hospital after suffering a full cardiac arrest for 25 minutes and doctors treated him for "an extended period of time" before declaring him dead.
"Despite extensive resuscitation efforts, Jaylen did not immediately regain a pulse and no cardiac activity was observed for several hours," the hospital said. "While this is something that happens infrequently, major resuscitative efforts, medication and early age may result in a patient's heart function to return spontaneously."
In a press conference Friday, the couple said that Jaylen had severe brain damage from 2-years-old and that his disability has kept him in bed on a ventilator. His father said that before going to the hospital, Jaylen smiled at family members and was able to hear, but he no longer does. They also said they would see Jaylen smile again "in heaven."
According to the couple, Jaylen was taken to Mercy Hospital and was pronounced dead on February 18, after his mother found him unresponsive.
Members of the family began planning a funeral for the child after the doctors declared him dead.
When other family members arrived at the hospital, they gasped to see Jaylen’s eye opening, the boy's father said.
The lawsuit said that the family had to force medical staff to perform more tests and a heart ultrasound that finally showed the boy's heart beating.
His parents are seeking $200,000 in damages. The lawsuit said that they suffered hours of "severe emotional distress."
The boy's parents also worry that because the boy was off of his respirator in the hospital, his condition may have worsened.