Safety Programs Decrease Tragedies During Childbirth
Medical malpractice lawsuits are aimed at holding medical professionals responsible when they fail to exercise the degree of care and skill required by them in their profession. There is a general consensus that doctors should be held responsible when their decisions or actions cause a patient harm, especially in the instance of negligence or carelessness. The harm doctors can cause to patients is particularly devastating when children are involved. Childbirth injuries and fatalities are still all-too-common in our civilized world. Recent studies, however, indicate that something as simple as a basic safety training program at hospitals can dramatically decrease the instances of childbirth-related medical incidents.Birth Complications and Medical Negligence
Birth injuries are among the most catastrophic of medical complications. Infant fatalities or injuries requiring life-long care or disability should be a primary concern for health care professionals, both during pregnancy and immediately after during the birth. Some of the many complications that may arise during pregnancy and birth include:
- Cerebral palsy;
- Spinal cord injuries;
- Brain injuries;
- Bone fractures;
- Medication overdoses or miscalculations;
- Misdiagnosis or failure to diagnose a medical condition in utero; and
- Harm to the mother due to medical errors, postpartum hemorrhaging, and excessive blood loss.
Just because something goes wrong during a pregnancy or birth does not necessarily imply that there was medical negligence. In order for a medical negligence claim in the state of California to survive, the injured party (or the representative of the injured party in the event of a minor or a deceased individual) must demonstrate:
- That the medical professional was negligent;
- That the plaintiff (injured person) was harmed; and
- That the medical professional’s negligence was a substantial factor in causing the injured person’s harm.
Negligence is a legal term that constitutes four separate things: duty, breach, causation, and damages. In its most simplistic terms, this means:
- The physician had a duty to act a certain way given the circumstances;
- The physician breached that duty;
- The physician was the cause of the harm/injury; and
- Damage (injury) resulted.
Negligence is the backbone of medical malpractice claims because it establishes that a doctor had a duty to perform a certain way and failed to do so. Doctors are held to a high standard of care, which is compared with how other doctors in the community would act. The question is usually whether another doctor would have made the same decision or acted in a similar manner as the allegedly negligent doctor. If so, the doctor will not likely be found negligent. If another doctor would have acted differently in the same circumstances, there is a possibility of negligence.Safety Programs to Help Decrease Birth Injuries
In addition to a matter of safety, medical malpractice claims raise the cost of healthcare. A healthcare organization advocating for improved safety training explained how following simple protocols can decrease healthcare expenditures significantly. For example, according to the World Health Organization, reducing the number of cesarean sections performed to the level recommended by the organization could save up to $441 million annually in the State of California. Cesarean section protocols, delivery procedures, emergency training, and monitoring techniques are all things that can be improved to increase safety. Small changes and a few hours of training can make all of the difference in saving a child (and mother’s) life.Birth Injury Malpractice Lawyer in Santa Clara County
The skilled San Jose medical malpractice attorneys at Corsiglia McMahon & Allard, L.L.P. understand how complicated, expensive, and emotional a birth related injury or death can be on a family. We want you to focus on recovery and not on your legal claim. By reaching out to our San Jose office, you can be confident that a team of experienced professionals will work on your case from start to finish and allow to you to take the time you need to recover.
Contacting an attorney right away is very important in these time-sensitive cases; medical malpractice claims have a statute of limitations in the State of California, meaning there is a window of time in which you must file your claim or it may be forever barred. Doctors, nurses, and other witnesses’ memories may fade over time; the sooner you build your case after the accident or injury occurs, the greater your chances of monetary recovery. Do not hesitate to contact our San Jose office to learn more about your legal rights as a victim of medical malpractice. Call (408) 289-1417 for a complimentary consultation today.