In the United States alone, around 27 in every 1,000 births results in a birth injury. The definition of a birth injury is harm caused to the baby before, during, or upon birth. There can be many different causes of birth injuries, from complications during pregnancy to problems during delivery. The levels of birth injuries can also vary: some are quite minor; others can have a profound effect on the baby’s life; and others can prove fatal to the infant.
Some of the most serious and debilitating birth injuries are those that affect the baby’s brain. These can be caused by oxygen deficiency during pregnancy or trauma during delivery. Other birth injuries include:
Brachial plexus palsy
Of course, many birth injuries result from natural causes – things that are beyond the control of the parents or the doctors. However, in some cases, birth injuries are caused by mistakes, delays, miscalculations, or even negligence of hospital staff, and it is in these cases that parents may be entitled to claim compensation for the defect or injury. Of course, compensation in no way makes up for the injury and trauma caused to the baby. However, if the child survives, the likelihood is that he or she may need a great deal of medical care, which will prove expensive. Compensation will help to fund hospital and home care for the baby. If the baby does not survive, the parents should be entitled to compensation for pain, suffering and grief.
Some of the mistakes or problems that could be experienced and construed as the fault of medical staff include:
Delays in C-Section delivery
Use of excessive force in delivery, causing rupture of uterus
Miscalculation in the size of the baby
Any form of negligence
Mistakes made during pregnancy or delivery
If you feel that your baby has suffered a birth injury due to negligence or preventable mistakes made by hospital staff, it is important to seek legal assistance as soon as possible. Ideally, this should be done immediately after the birth of the baby. Even if you are not sure whether you have grounds for compensation or what the extend of the baby’s injuries are, you should still seek assistance as early as possible as an experienced birth injuries lawyer will be able to advise whether you have grounds for compensation.
Medical negligence can be difficult to prove, which is why it is so vital that anyone that feels they have been affected by this situation seeks appropriate help from legal experts. A qualified and experienced birth injury lawyer will have the relevant skills, knowledge and experience to ensure that your case is as watertight and solid as possible. Going through an experienced birth injuries lawyer can help to increase your chances of success, and your lawyer will know exactly what sort of evaluations and assessments he or she needs to make in order to try and prove beyond a reasonable doubt the negligence of incompetence of the person or people responsible for the birth injury.
There are many lawyers that now deal with birth injury cases, and many offer free initial consultations. This means that you can quickly ascertain whether you have grounds to file for compensation and what your chances of a successful claim are. Your lawyer will be able to evaluate the facts surrounding your case, and can piece together the various bits of information and medical evidence in order to maximize your chances of getting the compensation you deserve for your suffering and for the baby’s injuries. The amount of compensation you get is usually dependant on the extent of the injuries as well as on how the injury will affect the baby. For instance, a less serious injury may affect the baby for a few years whereas a more serious one could reduce the baby’s lifespan considerably or could affect the baby for the rest of his or her life.
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