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Hospital may have vaxed dd without permission!

post #1 of 10
Thread Starter 
Okay, I need help from all you knowledgable people...

My dd was born on June 29th. We were planning a hospital birth, but she was determined to come earlier- she was born on the way there- and we were transported to the hospital via ambulance. When we got there, I was rushed to l&d to get repaired (extensive tearing) and dd was taken to the nicu to get warmed up and for observation. I remember my dh talking to me after she went to the nicu, and I specifically told him to tell them not to give her any shots. He came back a few minutes later to ask about the Vit K shot, and I said that she could have that, but NOT the Hep B vaccine. I assumed that was what had happened.

Well, today I got a statement from the hospital showing me what they had billed the insurance for, and I saw something about Hep B. Now I don't read medical-ese, I'm not exactly sure what htat was about, but it sure looks to me like they're billing my insurance for that vaccine. Now since it's Friday night, medical records are closed and I have to wait until MOnday to find out for sure. But my question is- could they have given her the vax without my permission? What are the laws regarding this? And what do I do if they did give the vaccine?

Oooh, I am still steaming about this!
post #2 of 10
Chances are you were probably just billed for the vax. Hospitals do this to insurance companies all the time to get $$$$. I even heard of someone's insurance being billed for a circumsision when they had a girl!
However if they did vax her, you possibly have a case on your hands. They can be even be charged with child-endangerment if you fight hard enough. I would look into your state laws. Unfortunatly, in the multitudes of paperwork you had to sign they may have slipped in a paper saying someting along the lines of "I give such and such hospital permission to treat baby as they see fit". In which case, they may argue that they saw fit to give her the vax. Also, I am pretty pos. you must sign a waver for any vacccine, so if you didnt sign one, they probably didnt give the shot. Do you rememberif she had bandaids on her legs. My neighbors had a hospital baby and she came home with one on each leg- one for vit k (when I asked what it was, my knowlegable neighbor said, "oh this ones special k or something like that and the other for hep b . so if she only had 1 bandaid, she probalby only got vitamin k.
post #3 of 10
Another possibility is that they screened YOU for hep B-- could be biling for your labwork, not her vaccine.
post #4 of 10
Don't panic till you know for sure what happened. Easier said than done, thoug. I know it's so impossible to wait.

I'm going to start with the bad news first.

When they gave my dd the Hep B shot despite us signing a waiver for her not to have it, it was legal on their part because the papers we had signed when we first got there (that they could treat me during labor and dd after she was born) were very broad and covered a lot of things. Shots and waivers included.

I'm not in your state, though, so maybe it is different where you are.

If they gave her the shot, unless she reacted noticeably and immediately, you are going to have a very hard time doing anything about it. You have to prove without a shadow of a doubt that there was a great and damaging reaction within 2 hours or something like that, otherwise, it just doesn't matter. And it's nearly impossible to prove anything. It sucks. I talked to two different lawyers and neither would take my case. They laughed at me.

Now, the good news.

Maybe she wasn't given the shot. Maybe, like amnesiac said, it was just you being tested for Hep B.

Was your dh with her most of the time, or was she with you at all? How long was she in nicu? And how long was she alone, with neither you or dh present? Did he tell the nurses there you didn't want the shot for her?

If for some reason they did give her the shot, don't waste your time letting the doctors or nurses have a piece of your mind. It's done, they won't know what to tell you, it's just a waste of time.

Go straight to the hospital administrator, or whoever is in charge of Guest Relations and make a huge stink. See what happens and see what kind of reaction you get.

I got quite a large amount taken off my total bill for their mistake with dd. It didn't make things any better, as far as them vacinating my dd against our wishes, but it was nice to get a discount.

I'm sorry you have to deal with this stress. I know it's the pits.

post #5 of 10

I don't know much about what your options are at this point, but I'll share what I do know. DS was born in Utah Valley, and were told that if he got the Hep B at the hospital we would know because we would be given a yellow immunization card in the packet of info and stuff from the hospital. I don't know if this policy varies from hospital to hospital, but ours was UVRMC, if that helps. Since we didn't get that yellow card, when the doc asked if he had had the Hep B, we said we didn't think so, since we didn't have that card. Just to be sure, they called the hospital and checked. So you might be able to just call and see if they have the records of giving it to your DD.

So sorry for this stress in your life!
post #6 of 10
Thread Starter 
Well, I've calmed down a little bit.

I know that she's being billed for it- whatever the Hep B thing is on her insurance statement, because the hospital separates the charges I incurred from the ones the baby did. And the Hep B charge is right there with the erythromycin drops.

Dd was probably in the nicu without us for about an hour. I was seriously torn, and hadn't delivered the placenta when we got to the hospital. The stitching was extremely painful (local anasthetic doesn't work for me) and dh was with me until the stitching was done when I told him to go to the nicu to be with her. After that, she was never out of mine or dh's sight. But, as they were taking her to the nicu, I specifically told dh to tell the nurses that she could have Vit K, but not hep B.

Nemmer, I didn't get a yellow vax card, so I'm hoping that it''s something else that's going on... I don't remember seeing any bandaids on her legs, actually. I don't know where they gave her the Vit K shot. I also didn't sign any consent forms or anything. I'll have to ask dh if he did.

I'm calling medical records first thing on Monday morning.
post #7 of 10
Another way you can check--check the number of band aids they had on her. They would probably have put one over each pin prick they did, so you can tell by how many there are how many times she was stuck. There should be one for the Vitamin K, and then maybe one for PKU and/or blood sugar, if they did either of those.
post #8 of 10
The hospital dd was in didn't use band-aids either. But then again, they were a mean NICU unit.

I wanted to say though, that they did put on a card of dd's that came home with her paperwork that she had the Hep B shot.

So if you can't find a card or an immunization sheet like others have mentioned, maybe you can breathe a little easier.
post #9 of 10
When my son was born I told them do NOT give him the Hep B vax and they did anyway. They even had the audacity to come in afterwards and tell me he did just fine through it. I was pi$$ed to say the least!

I started to look into a lawsuit and contacted the CEO of the hospital who informed me that most people want their babies to be healthy and that people like me don't come along very often who would rather put their babies at risk. I was fully ready to run them through the ringer but my baby's daddy got mad at me and told me just forget it.

Needless to say I am STILL steamed at him over that one. Make sure you check into it hun because like I said, they knew I didn't want it done either (heck I worked at the hospital and had inserted into my records in three places!) but they did it anyway.
post #10 of 10
That's unbelievable.

I agree that I'd just call and ask records casually rather than charge in and put them on the defensive. And, then, if they DID...

btw: bandaids here seem to be totally optional. Our dr always confirms that we don't. Says it gets sweaty underneath and then you have to peel it off. Easier just to press a cotton ball for a few secs.
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