Can a Nurse be Held Responsible for Birth Injuries?
According to the birthinjuryguide.org, between 6 and 8 per 1,000 babies born each year endure a birth injury in the United States and the majority of these injuries are preventable with proper medical care.
A birth injury is any form of injury endured by an infant during pregnancy or delivery. There are many ways that a birth injury can happen. Common causes of birth injuries include the use of prescription or illegal drugs during pregnancy, aggressive birthing tactics, delayed birth, or oxygen deprivation due to a failure to recognize signs of fetal distress during delivery. When a medical professional fails to act within generally accepted guidelines for a medical professional under similar circumstances, they may have acted negligently. If an injury happens as a result of negligence, a medical malpractice claim may be an appropriate way to recover damages. Medical professionals include doctors, pharmacists and nurses.
Can a nurse be held liable for a birth injury?
If a nurse acted negligently and it led to a birth injury then he or she may be liable for the birth injury. In order to be liable, the injury must have been caused by a duty the nurse performed or a failure to perform one of their duties.
For example, a nurse who is responsible for administering medications to the mother and/or baby could be liable if he or she administers a dangerous dosage or too many dosages of a certain drug. Oxytocin and Pitocin are drugs commonly used during labor and delivery and they have been linked to birth injuries when too much is administered.
A nurse would not be responsible for injuries caused by malfunctioning hospital equipment or a medication such as an epidural administered by another medical professional.
Bellingham birth injury attorney
If you or your infant endured a birth injury that could have been caused by the negligence of a medical professional, contact an experienced birth injury lawyer as soon as you able. The birth injury attorney can discuss your legal rights and may be able to help you recover damages for medical bills, pain and suffering and more.
Common birth injuries
Birth injuries vary widely in type and seriousness. Some birth injuries are overcome easily while others will last a lifetime. Some birth injuries are obvious like bruises and broken bones. Others may not be discovered until later like the inability to suck, severe vomiting, and spastic motions that could indicate a very serious problem.
According to stanfordhospital.org, common birth injuries are:
- Fractures to the arm or collar bone
- Subconjunctival hemorrhage
- Facial paralysis
- Bruising on the face or head
- Forceps marks
- Caput succedaneum
Serious birth injuries are rare but include:
- Brachial palsy
- Erb’s palsy
- Cerebral palsy
If you have lost a loved one or been injured through no fault of your own, you have enough on your plate. Let an experienced medical negligence attorney fight for the justice and fair compensation that you deserve. It is not uncommon to receive a settlement from the insurance company that is five to ten times larger with the help of a lawyer. Call the caring, tireless and experienced wrongful death attorneys at Tario & Associates, P.S. in Bellingham, WA today for a FREE consultation! We have been representing residents of Whatcom County, Skagit County and surrounding areas since 1979. You will pay nothing up front and no attorney fees at all unless we recover damages for you!