Infertility is a frustrating, heart-wrenching reality for many couples in Oregon and across the country. The desire to have a child, and the inability to achieve that dream, is one of the hardest challenges many people face. When there’s nowhere left to turn, many couples put their dreams in the hands of fertility doctors with the hope and trust that the doctor will carefully and compassionately work to help them achieve their dream of becoming parents. One doctor apparently betrayed that trust and is being sued for medical negligence for taking advantage of a couple desperate to have a child of their own.
In 1977, a couple unable to have a child due to an irreversible vasectomy went to a gynecologist to have artificial insemination performed. The semen used was supposed to be that of a medical student who shared similar characteristics with the father-to-be and who had undergone testing to become medically cleared to be a donor. The process was a success, and in December of that year a baby girl was born.
Over 40 years later the daughter decided to investigate information about her genetic father due to some medical issues. During her research and DNA testing, the woman discovered that her actual genetic donor was not a medical student at all, but was instead the doctor that had performed the insemination. Instead of using donor sperm like the couple had agreed to, he had instead used his own.
After learning of the doctor’s betrayal, the couple, furious and violated, filed a lawsuit against the gynecologist and the hospital where he worked. The lawsuit claims fraud, medical negligence, battery, failure to obtain informed consent, breach of contract and infliction of emotional distress. The couple is seeking over $75,000 in monetary damages.
The idea that a doctor would maliciously inseminate a patient is unthinkable. The fact that the act occurred so long ago may likely prevent him from facing any criminal charges. When a violation like this occurs in Oregon, a victim can utilize the knowledge of an experienced attorney to seek a civil judgment for monetary damages against the offending physician for medical negligence.