Suing for failed pregnancy diagnosis

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    Student claims doctors failed to diagnose pregnancy
    • 4 HOURS AGO FEBRUARY 01, 2015 10:43AM

    Naomi Dartnell with her daughter Delilah. Picture: JASON SAMMON Source: News Limited
    A UNIVERSITY student who gave birth to a healthy little girl is suing a medical centre over claims doctors failed to diagnose the pregnancy.
    Naomi Dartnell, 22, said despite multiple visits to the centre complaining of fatigue and other symptoms, she was six months gone before a GP at another clinic realised.
    The stunned science student went ahead with the unexpected pregnancy and just 10 weeks after the first ultrasound gave birth to Delilah, who turns three in April.
    Ms Dartnell’s lawyers have begun Supreme Court proceedings against the La Trobe University Medical Centre, seeking compensation for the cost of raising Delilah, and for pain and suffering.
    The young mother fears she will never achieve her childhood dream of becoming a vet because her marks have suffered as she juggles study and single motherhood.
    She was a first-year student living on campus in Bundoora when she fell pregnant. The father is not involved in Delilah’s upbringing.
    Ms Dartnell claimed she had been a regular visitor at the university medical centre and had frequent blood tests as she battled chronic fatigue and iron deficiency.
    She said it never occurred to her that she could be pregnant because she had not gained weight.
    Ms Dartnell said the legal action was aimed at improving her little girl’s future.
    “I didn’t have time to prepare, or save before she came,” she said.
    “I don’t feel able to give her the life she could have had if I’d known. Any compensation will help her, basically.”
    She claims she is grappling with motherhood and is taking antidepressants and seeing a psychologist to help her cope.
    The keen sportswoman, who played high-level basketball while unknowingly carrying her unborn daughter, is thankful for the little girl’s good health.
    Ms Dartnell was contacted by the Sunday Herald Sun and did not seek publicity.
    “It’s hard even telling friends that I have a baby,” she said.
    “Some people take it badly, they’re a bit judgmental because of my age. It has quite a bad stigma attached to it sometimes.”
    Slater and Gordon medical law expert Nick Mann said the litigation centred on the cost of raising Delilah, not on personal gain for Ms Dartnell.
    The operators of the La Trobe University Medical Centre did not respond to requests for comment
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