There is no denying that any sort of injury can be stressful and traumatic. However, when it comes to birth injuries, this can be heightened by a considerable degree, especially if the consequences are fatal. Knowing how to deal with a birth injury can be difficult. Birth injuries can impact the mother and the child physically. However, psychologically, birth injuries can have an impact on the entire family. This is especially the case if the consequences of these injuries are lifelong. With that being said, in this blog post, we provide some pieces of advice for any family that is currently going through a situation like this.
The different types of birth injuries
As touched upon in the introduction, there are many different types of injuries that can happen at birth. So, let’s start by taking a look at some of the most common ones. In relation to babies, common injuries include brain injuries, shoulder dystocia complications, broken bones during delivery, obstetric brachial plexus injury, neonatal death, and stillbirth. In regards to the mother, some of the most common issues include injuries caused because of failure to manage infections, including pre-eclampsia, incorrect stitching, fissures, and tears.
Watch your child’s development closely
If your child has suffered an injury because of birth complications, it is imperative to watch their development much more closely than you would otherwise. Take note if they lag behind on any pivotal milestones or if your child seems to be walking in an abnormal manner. Don’t worry about being an annoying parent that goes to the hospital with every concern – it is better to be safe than sorry! Getting an evaluation done quickly can be much more beneficial than you may realize.
Is the midwife or doctor to blame?
While some birth injuries simply cannot be avoided, there have been a number of cases whereby midwives, doctors or other medical professionals have been to blame because they have not provided an adequate level of care. Some of the most common examples of childbirth medical negligence are as follows:
- Mothers being turned away from maternity units even though they have reported problems that could be serious.
- Failure to differentiate between a situation that is normal and one that is abnormal.
- Delays in requestion help from senior professionals or not requesting help at all.
- Delays in dealing with complications during delivery.
- Failure to spot signs that the baby is in distress during labor or before labor.
- Failure to monitor the baby’s heart rate correctly and record it.
- Failure to follow the proper procedures and protocols.
If any of the above applies, you may be entitled to compensation. It is certainly advisable to seek a payout because the money will help you to support your child.
FAQs about medical negligence claims
Do I need to use a solicitor to make a claim? There is no legal requirement. However, if you want to have any chance of getting the compensation you deserve, then you should use a solicitor. Otherwise, you will be setting yourself up for failure. Look for a birth injury lawyer specifically, not a general lawyer.
How long do I have to make a claim? You have three years from the date of the incident and court proceedings must be issued within this time frame. The only exceptions relate to incidents whereby your child’s injuries have developed over time, in which case you will have three years from the date of your diagnosis.
What can I claim for? Aside from receiving compensation for your injuries and your suffering, you can claim for any out of pocket expenses incurred, including the likes of vehicle repair costs, loss of income, prescription expenses, counseling costs, travel costs, treatment expenses, and childcare costs.
How much compensation will I receive? It is impossible to give an answer to this question without knowing the ins and outs of your case.
All in all, there is no way to put into words just how traumatic birth injuries can be for any family. This is especially the case if the whole incident could have been avoided with the correct medical care. Hopefully, through reading this blog post, you now feel like you have more information and assistance in terms of the whole family dealing with such a traumatic event. Of course, nothing is going to make the situation easy, but being proactive for your child is always a great place to start.