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Judge rules UConn Health responsible for prenatal death

June 30, 2021 GMT

HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) — A Connecticut couple has been awarded $37.6 million after a state judge ruled UConn Health was responsible for the prenatal death of one of their children and the brain injury of a twin.

Superior Court Judge Mark H. Taylor, in a 104-page ruling this week, found that sperm from a donor used in an insemination procedure in 2014 was contaminated with a herpes virus that can cause severe birth defects and fetal death.

One child died in utero in January 2015. The second requires lifetime medical attention, according to the lawsuit.

The Bristol couple received the treatment at the Center for Advanced Reproductive Services, a private company, which was under contract with UConn Health.

UConn’s prenatal care team failed to recognize evidence of the infection during an ultrasound, and failed to warn the mother of a risk of infection, according to the lawsuit.

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Lawyers for the center disputed the cause of the infection, according to the ruling, arguing that its transmission during the fertilization procedure, “has yet to be conclusively proven as matter of scientific fact.:

Lawyers for UConn Health said they will appeal.

“The case that the judge ruled on (Monday) was an incredibly tragic situation and our hearts continue to go out to this family, which has experienced such pain and loss,” UConn Health said in a statement.