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What is a birth injury?

The birth of a new baby is one of the most exciting times in a parent's life. He or she is likely filled with hope and anticipation for the future. Unfortunately, in a few cases in Maryland, things do not go as planned, forcing parents to cope with an altered plan for the future. If that planned is altered due to a mistake made by a medical care provider that resulted in a birth injury, a medical malpractice lawsuit might be appropriate.

A birth injury could be caused by a medical care provider's actions or failure to act during the birthing process, resulting in an injury to the baby. It could also be caused by a drug administered to the mother during pregnancy that caused harm to the baby. In the first scenario, a doctor may have chosen a variety of actions. These include incorrectly using equipment such as forceps and failing to perform a needed C-section, among others.

In order to successfully argue your case, you must prove that the child actually suffered from a birth injury, as opposed to an unavoidable birth defect, which occurs prior to birth for a variety of reasons. Additionally, it must be proved that a medical care provider's treatment failed to meet an acceptable standard of care. To do this, an expert witness must testify regarding the standard of care and how the medical professional failed to meet this. Additionally, it must be proven that the failure to meet this standard resulted in injury.

Some statistics indicate that five out of every 1000 babies in this country are a victim of a birth injury. In a situation such as this, it is important to know your rights as well as the rights of your child. By seeking experienced guidance, parents in Maryland have been able to successfully prove they were a victim of medical malpractice and were awarded damages to cover expenses such as medical bills and pain and suffering, among others.  

Source: FindLaw, "Birth Injury Overview", Nov. 11, 2014

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