Madrid: A 19-year-old woman whose identity was swapped at birth with another child born hours earlier is suing the region’s regional health department for more than 3 million euros ($3.55 million), her lawyer told a local TV station on Tuesday.
According to the health department in the northern region of La Rioja, an internal investigation determined a ‘one-off human error’ was to blame, and it would respect any judicial proceedings.
‘We are not aware of any other cases,’ the agency said, adding that the current system would prevent similar mishaps from occurring. The woman, who prefers to remain anonymous, was born in 2002 in the San Millan de Logrono hospital in La Rioja some five hours after another baby girl.
‘In the case of my client, she was born later but was given to the mother who gave birth to the first child,’ Jose Saez Morga, the lawyer, told the TVR television network. ‘This is negligence so gross that it speaks for itself.’
On behalf of his client, he filed a claim against La Rioja’s health department for immeasurable emotional harm caused by the error. The lawyer was unable to comment further.
The girl grew up in a dysfunctional family and was mostly raised by her grandmother, according to larioja.com. The error was discovered in 2017 when the woman of the family she grew up with demanded a paternity test based on a child support disagreement, which confirmed she was not related.