Welcoming a new child into the world can be a wonderful but unpredictable experience. Labor and delivery can be a complex and sometimes scary process, and we trust medical providers to do their best to ensure the health of both mother and baby. Unfortunately, doctors can make negligent mistakes that can lead to serious complications, including birth injuries.
If your child suffered a birth injury, your family could experience significant hardships. In this situation, you can file a lawsuit against the at-fault provider and recover a financial settlement to pay for these damages. However, you will need to prove that the doctor’s negligence caused your child’s injuries.
What Is Medical Malpractice?
All medical professionals, including doctors, obstetricians, surgeons, and nurses, have a responsibility to uphold a certain standard of care. In simple terms, these providers need to act in the same way that a similarly trained and reasonable provider would under the same circumstances. If a provider deviates from this standard and harms a patient, he or she commits an act of medical malpractice.
Below are a few examples of medical malpractice that could lead to a birth injury:
Exerting too much force when delivering a baby
Failure to monitor a baby’s heartbeat
Failure to perform a necessary cesarean section
Using dangerous birthing tools like forceps or vacuums
Failure to check for common maternal complications
The Four Elements of Medical Negligence
To recover compensation in a birth injury lawsuit, you will need to show that the at-fault medical professional committed an act of malpractice. You and your attorney will need to gather enough evidence to prove four critical elements: duty of care, breach of duty, causation, and damages.
Duty of Care: The at-fault medical provider owed you a duty of care at the time of the birth injury. Doctors must uphold the medical standard of care to patients that they treat in a formal setting, such as a hospital.
Breach of Duty: The at-fault medical provider breached his or her duty of care through a negligent act or failure to act. Failure to monitor vital signs or the misuse of birthing tools may constitute a breach of duty.
Causation: The at-fault medical provider’s actions caused your child’s birth injuries and resulting damages. For example, if your child suffered brain damage due to oxygen deprivation, you will need to show that the provider’s actions caused the loss of oxygen.
Damages: Your child and your family suffered damages that you are eligible to recover in a lawsuit. These damages may include medical expenses, pain and suffering, and disability accommodations.
Evidence Needed to Prove a Birth Injury Lawsuit
Proving that a doctor’s negligence caused a birth injury can be a complex process. With the right evidence, however, you can show that the negligence occurred. The most important piece of evidence will be your child’s medical records, which will detail the circumstances surrounding his or her birth as well as the nature and extent of his or her injuries.
Specialized medical knowledge is often necessary to prove a birth injury claim. A Georgia birth injury attorney can connect you with a similarly trained medical expert who can evaluate your case, determine whether the provider committed negligence, and testify on your behalf.
Hiring a birth injury lawyer in Augusta can help you in many parts of your claim, from crafting a case for the courtroom to filing the necessary paperwork. As soon as possible after your child’s injury, contact a birth injury attorney to discuss your case.