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When does a birth injury constitute medical malpractice?

When a physician is responsible for a birth injury that should have been prevented, it is important for them to be held accountable. However, doctors cannot prevent all birth injuries from taking place. As a result, any parent who is in this position and considering legal action should try to determine whether or not medical malpractice occurred before moving forward.

According to FindLaw.com, an estimated five out of every 1,000 babies delivered in the United States will suffer birth injuries during the birthing process. In a majority of birth injury cases, a doctor either fails to evaluate or address a condition properly or does not provide proper prenatal care (such as prescribing drugs improperly).

Doctors make a number of mistakes which may result in birth injuries and constitute medical malpractice. For example, a physician may fail to:

  • Identify a pregnancy-related disorder (such as hypertension)
  • Perform a C-section when needed
  • Accurately assess the health of a baby before it is born
  • Use a medical device correctly

Some birth injuries do not constitute malpractice, such as problems which take place during delivery that could not have been prevented. Also, cases can be far more challenging to win if a baby was born with birth defects due to a mother's illegal drug use. If you are thinking about filing a claim, you will probably have to prove that either you or your child did not receive proper medical care. Although this information is not to be taken as legal advice, hopefully it has provided you with a better understanding of when birth injuries constitute medical malpractice.

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