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The birth of a child should be a happy time for everyone involved. However, all too often, health care providers are negligent in the delivery room, and catastrophic birth injuries result. When unfortunate birth injuries result from a medical professional’s carelessness or negligence, that individual may be held accountable under New Jersey law. If you know or suspect that a birth injury occurred as a result of a health care provider’s negligence, it is essential that you contact a Cumberland County birth injury lawyer immediately.
The reality is that no amount of monetary recovery can adequately compensate a person – or that person’s family – for a catastrophic birth injury and the lifetime of care that it oftentimes requires. A knowledgeable birth injury attorney will have the medical knowledge and legal expertise to examine all of the facts and circumstances of your case and can explore all of your legal options.
Who Are the Parties Responsible for Birth Injuries?
While some birth injuries occur naturally and involve pregnancy complications or a difficult labor, the majority of birth injuries occur when a health care provider acts in a reckless, careless, or negligent manner in the delivery room. The responsible health care provider or providers are usually delivery room doctors (i.e. obstetricians) and delivery room nurses or other personnel. When these individuals perform their duties poorly, serious birth injuries and birth defects can occur as a result of one or more of the following:
- Delayed oxygen in the baby’s body
- Delayed C-section or other necessary medical procedure
- Improper fetal heart monitoring
- Improper use of forceps or other delivery room tools and equipment
- Administering incorrect or improper delivery room drugs to the mother
- Use of improper delivery room techniques
- Inadequate attention paid by delivery room staff to patients
- Failing to follow proper delivery room procedures and other medical procedures
Typical Birth Injuries
A potentially unlimited number and type of birth injuries can occur as a result of a delivery room doctor’s carelessness or negligence during a procedure. The most common types of birth injuries that can occur include the following:
- Cerebral palsy
- Lack of oxygen to the baby’s brain (i.e. hypoxia)
- Skull injury
- Irreversible brain damage
- Wrongful death
How to Prove Birth Injuries
Cumberland County birth injury cases fall under the umbrella of medical malpractice or obstetrical malpractice. In a birth injury case, the injured plaintiff (or the injured plaintiff’s representative) has the burden of proof. In other words, the injured plaintiff must prove recklessness, carelessness, and/or medical negligence on the part of the healthcare provider. In virtually all cases, successfully proving a birth injury requires the expert testimony of a second health care provider who can demonstrate that the delivery room doctor did something wrong.
The standard of care applicable to New Jersey healthcare providers is that of a reasonable physician/obstetrician acting under the same or similar circumstances. If a delivery room doctor fails to act as a reasonable physician/obstetrician would have acted, then that healthcare provider likely breached the applicable standard care and could be held liable for medical negligence or malpractice. For more information, contact a Cumberland County birth injury attorney.
The most common types of damages available in Cumberland County birth injury cases include compensation for all relevant medical bills and treatment, compensation for a lifetime of pain, suffering, and inconvenience, compensation for future medical care, compensation for future medical procedures, including corrective procedures, and compensation for all other related monetary losses that directly result from the health care provider’s negligence.
Contact a Cumberland County Birth Injury Attorney Today
Birth injuries can be devastating for everyone involved. An experienced Cumberland County birth injury lawyer can represent you throughout your case and help you to obtain monetary compensation for yourself or a loved one.