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Banner Health found liable in $31 million medical malpractice lawsuit in Maricopa County

A Maricopa County jury has awarded over $31 million in what is believed to be the largest medical malpractice verdict in Arizona history. The lawsuit was filed by Krystle Griepentrog against Banner Health over her 2014 birth that left her newborn son Greyson with brain damage.

According to law firm Snyder & Wenner, Banner nurses and doctors administered Pitocin after the baby suffered oxygen deprivation during labor. The staff continued to administer the drug, which the law firm says caused more deprivation. The loss of oxygen resulted in cerebral palsy.

Law firm partner Brian Snyder said the staff violated hospital policy related to administering the drug.

“These policies are in place for a reason. They're to protect the patient safety and they continue to violate the policies and we continue to have these devastating outcomes. … This was a completely preventable incident," he said.

In a statement to KJZZ, a Banner Health spokesperson said they “respectfully disagree” with the verdict and are looking into future legal action.

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Ignacio Ventura is a reporter for KJZZ. He graduated from the University of Southern California with a bachelor’s degree in creative writing and a minor in news media and society.