For many families, childbirth is an exciting time. Any harm or birth injury can be devastating for the family or their relatives. When health care professionals act carelessly and fail to take proper care, the health of a mother or her newborn baby can be harmed. If your loved one has endured a birth-related injury, a Georgia medical malpractice claim might be your only option.
Since 2016, Georgia has increased by 50 percent in the number of paid medical malpractice claims. Moreover, for medical malpractice payment severity (i.e. the quantum of the final payout), Georgia ranked ninth in the U.S. as reported by Georgia Health News.
In this document, we will demonstrate what you need to know and prove to establish an effective birth injury claim. We will also take a look at when you need to pursue legal action. Following are some measures you should take right away following a birth-related injury.
What Is a Birth Injury?
A birth injury is the result of a healthcare provider’s inaction that takes place during labor or delivery. Birth injuries could be trivial injuries that heal without treatment or fatal injuries that need lifetime care.
Birth injuries that are usually considered small include:
- Bruising and swelling of the head
- Damaging of small blood vessels in the eyes
- Head scratches
- Facial nerve damage
- Fracture of the collarbone or clavicle
Birth injuries that are usually considered severe include:
- Respiratory difficulties
- Cerebral palsy
- Brain damage (TBI)
- Shoulder dystocia
Lawyers are mostly keen to handle Georgia medial malpractice cases involving serious birth injuries. At the same time, it can be difficult to find a lawyer who is eager to handle a minor birth injury lawsuit because of the time and expense associated with prosecuting birth injury claims. Sometimes it is not instantly evident if a birth injury is minor or serious. For example, until few months after a child is born, some symptoms of cerebral palsy may not arise.
Is the Hospital Liable in Cases of Medical Malpractice?
Although some birth injuries are caused by carelessness, while other injuries cannot be helped. If the hospital’s negligence results in birth injuries, the parents may be able to pursue a Georgia medical malpractice claim for injuries.
A hospital may be held accountable for birth injuries if their expertise failed to:
- Inspect the attending physician’s certification to perform the delivery
- Monitor the infant and mother precisely during labor and delivery
- Provide good health care to both the mother and the infant
- Comprehend admitting and discharging standards for the mother and infant
- Follow the approved medical standard of care during labor and delivery
- Have staff follow the treatment instructions provided by the mother’s physician
- Carry out required clinical tests
- Keep proper medical records for the mother and infant
When Can You Sue for a Birth Injury in Georgia?
For parents, birth injuries are always painful. Suing someone for a birth injury is not always an option. To litigate someone for a birth injury, someone has to be at fault. If the birth injury was certain or if the injury was required to avoid a more major injury, the health care providers are not deemed as the culprit. To build a fault in a birth injury case in Georgia, you need to prove that care provided by your healthcare provider was not sufficient which caused your child’s injury.
That being said, Georgia admits that healthcare professionals should be held to certain standards. If the health care provided by the healthcare professional falls below these standards and as a result, an injury has occurred, the healthcare provider will be held responsible. Parties usually keep medical experts to provide reports to assure an insurance company, jury, or judge that a healthcare professional neglected and failed to meet the relevant standard of care.
What Steps Should Be Taken Immediately After a Birth Injury?
Life as a parent is unpredictable and you perhaps did not think your first act as a parent would be retaining your child’s birth injury claim.
After a devastating birth injury, there are some but very important steps you, as the parent or guardian of the injured infant, should take for the purpose of improving your possibilities of recovering damages down the line:
- Your child is vulnerable and it is vital to focus on your child’s health and provide extra care
- Documenting everything and keeping track of all expenses linked to the injury; It is to ensure you receive all damages
- Get an experienced lawyer who could help in retain birth injury claim
Get in Touch with Georgia Medical Malpractice Attorneys:
If your child has been hurt in a birth-related injury, you should consider contacting our surgical malpractice lawyers to discuss the possibility of filing a medical malpractice claim.