The family of a teenager has filed a lawsuit against Boston Children’s Hospital, alleging medical malpractice and civil rights violations.

The lawsuit alleges that the teen’s civil rights, as well as those of her parents, were violated by the facility and four doctors when they attempted to terminate the parent’s custody rights.

According to the girl’s father, his daughter had received prior treatment for mitochondrial disease at Tufts Medical Center. However, in February 2013 they decided to take her treatment to Boston Children’s Hospital due to a recommendation from her primary care physician.

For some reason, instead of being admitted directly to the hospital’s GI unit, the teen was taken to the emergency room. It was at that time that she was treated by a doctor who changed her diagnosis, noting that her problem was psychosomatic and thus removing her from previously prescribed medication.

Upon attempting to discharge their daughter, the hospital got in touch with the Massachusetts Department of Children and Families to discuss whether or not “medical child abuse” was occurring.

As a result, the Massachusetts Department of Children and Families took over her medical care for approximately one year. It was during that time that she found herself in a psychiatric unit.

The girl’s father added the following:

“When we arrived [at Boston Children’s], she had the flu. Now she’s in a wheelchair, she can’t walk.”

When patient visit any medical facility, they hope they will receive top notch medical care. However, even the most reputable hospitals and doctors can make errors that cause additional harm to the patient.

Source:, “Family of Justina Pelletier sues Boston Children’s Hospital,” Dialynn Dwyer, Feb. 25, 2016