Recently, a South Carolina jury awarded the family of a newborn $4.4 million dollars for medical malpractice/negligence stemming from the delivery of the child. In their complaint, the family alleged that a nurse failed to properly monitor the baby’s fetal heart monitoring strips — strips that show the heartbeat rate of the baby — and, as a result, did not realize that the baby was in fetal distress and required emergent medical attention and/or delivery. As a result of this negligence, the family alleged that the baby experienced prolonged periods without oxygen while in utero and during the delivery. The baby was delivered alive, but later diagnosed with cerebral-palsy like complications. At the age of 5, the baby died from these complications.
As experienced medical negligence/malpractice attorneys in the Baltimore, Maryland and Washington D.C. area, we have handled numerous cases involving the negligence of doctors, nurses, and other health care providers involved with the delivery of a baby. These health care providers are charged with providing a certain level of care to both the mother and the baby to ensure that both navigate the labor and delivery process safely. In fact, there are many standards and/or regulations published by reputable medical professional societies, such as the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG), that govern the care that should be provided to a mother and baby during the pre-natal, labor and delivery phases. The following are examples of medical mistakes and/or errors that have, in the past, led to our office filing a medical malpractice lawsuit in this context:
(1) failure to monitor a fetal heart monitoring strip
(2) failure to timely perform a cesarean section
(3) failure to diagnose a mother with pre-eclampsia
(4) failure to timely diagnose a placental abruption
(5) improper use of forceps or a vacuum to delivery a child, resulting in a brachial plexus injury to the child.
It has been the experience of this office that the injuries caused by these types of negligence (and others) result in extraordinary medical costs (both past and future) to the family and the unimaginable loss of a healthy life, an emotional/pscyhological loss that is particularly devastating on the injured child’s family. If you or a loved one has been the victim of medical negligence in the context of a birth-related injury, call our office for a free consultation.