It’s not rare for doctors to commit medical mistakes during childbirth especially if they lack training or experience. But if something went wrong during delivery that resulted from a doctor’s negligence, now that’s a huge cause for concern.
Here are some legal things to remember if your doctor has made a medical mistake during childbirth.
1. Know what types of birth injuries can result from a doctor’s medical error during childbirth.
There’s only one way for you to find out if the doctor has made a medical error during your childbirth, and that is if either you or your newborn baby has birth injuries. Here are the most common birth-related injuries that usually result from a doctor’s negligence during childbirth:
- Neonatal brain injuries that can result in long-term or permanent neurological and physical problems to your newborn baby.
- Spinal cord injury that can result in paralysis of your newborn baby.
- Brachial plexus injuries can affect your newborn’s baby ability to move his/her one or both arms.
- Maternal injuries like infections, severe lacerations, and internal bleeding can result in lifelong effects for the mother and can often lead to wrongful death.
2. Know the most common medical mistakes that negligent doctors usually commit during childbirth.
Birth injuries are usually the result of a doctor’s negligence. These birth injuries can result from doctor’s medical mistakes like:
- Improper use of tools used for childbirth.
- Failure to treat fetal distress.
- Failure to perform an emergency C-section.
- Failure to control the oxygen intake during operation.
There are also medical mistakes that usually lead to maternal injuries during childbirth like:
- Inability to prevent or control bleeding.
- Inability to prevent or control perineal tearing.
- Inability to diagnose and treat a life-threatening complication of pregnancy like preeclampsia.
- Inability to diagnose and treat maternal infections.
3. Know what to do in cases of a wrongful birth.
If the doctor’s medical mistake has led to a wrongful birth, you have the right to file a claim that the doctor has neglected to inform you about any infant abnormalities. Most parents tend to choose elective abortion if they know in advance that the infant has defects.
Wrongful birth occurs when:
- A doctor was unable to screen the infant for any defects during pregnancy, or
- A doctor has failed to report to you the proper results.
You can sue the negligent doctor to receive compensation for the costs of caring for an infant with abnormalities or defects.
4. Know what legal actions you can take if you suspect your doctor has committed a medical mistake during childbirth.
The medical community is not keen on admitting mistakes. Doctors and the hospital may try to avoid the repercussions of medical errors because their reputation and credentials will be at risk. Also, some doctors won’t want to pay you as compensation for the medical mistake they made. What’s even worse is that medical mistakes made by doctors are often left ignored. Even if you have proof of your claim, the medical community could potentially still manage to falsify your claim.
If you suspect that your doctor has been negligent and has made a medical mistake during childbirth, know that you have the right to file a lawsuit against the doctor and the hospital. But filing a lawsuit might not be enough because the doctor and the hospital may try to cover up your case.
To prove that your case is strong here are some legal actions you need to take:
- File a complaint against the doctor and the hospital to your state or local health department.
- Grab a complete copy of your medical records.
- If the doctor that attended you doesn’t want to face you, talk to a senior doctor or a patient advocate and tell them about your situation.
- Get the services of a qualified and experienced attorney.
Talk to a birth injury lawyer as soon as possible, if you believe that your doctor has been negligent and has made a medical mistake during childbirth. They can help you with a lot of things.
- An experienced and skilled injury attorney can help you prove your claim.
- They can help you procure critical medical records which you may not have seen yet.
- Your attorney will also review the circumstances of your childbirth.
- The lawyer may be able to uncover any cover-ups or inaccuracies in your medical records.
- Hopefully, your hired attorney will help you recover the compensation you and your child deserve.
Childbirth should be a joyful occasion for parents. If you suspect that your doctor has made a medical mistake during childbirth that has led to a birth injury, be sure to take the appropriate legal actions against that doctor so that no other pregnant woman will fall victim into his/her negligence.
Disclaimer: The above article contains general information regarding legal actions to take against medical mistakes made by doctors during childbirth. The article should not be considered as legal advice nor a legal opinion. For more accurate information about this matter, kindly refer to a qualified birth injury attorney near you.
About The Author:
Vicki Haskett is a legal writing enthusiast who’s had over 25 years of experience in her field. She enjoys sharing her experiences with those who want to learn more about the legal world. In her spare time, she spends quality time with her family and friends.