Pretoria - A Soweto mother whose 5-year-old daughter is partially blind and has severe cerebral palsy due to a lack of oxygen resulting from birth complications, is set to receive R6.1 million from the Gauteng MEC for Health.

Matshidiso Matlawa is blaming the health authorities for the condition of her daughter Lethabo, stating that she did not receive the necessary care when she gave birth in 2009 at the Chris Hani Baragwanath Hospital.

Matlawa initially claimed more than R18m in the North Gauteng High Court, but settled the matter for R6.1m this week.

The mother, 31, said she was healthy during her pregnancy and had regular check-ups.

A few days before her due date, she experienced contractions and was taken to hospital. She was examined by a nurse, who told her the foetus was in distress and a Caesarean had to be done.

The woman stated in court documents that when a doctor eventually arrived, she did not do much. She asked the doctor when the Caesarean would be done, but the doctor left and never returned.

Much later Matlawa was seen by another doctor who told her there were no operating theatres available and she was in a queue.

When the Caesarean was performed hours later, the baby did not cry and was blue. The baby was immediately taken to ICU.

Matlawa said a doctor explained to her that her baby had suffered from a lack of oxygen during birth and had brain damage.

Little Lethabo was discharged two weeks later, but she suffered from seizures since birth.

According to papers, the foetus suffered distress during the more than eight-hour wait for the Caesarean to be performed.

Matlawa said the hospital failed to provide her with acceptable medical care as she was not monitored during her labour, nor did she receive the necessary care during the birth process. She said the damage done to her only child could have been prevented if she received the necessary care.

Pretoria News