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What Compensation is Available to Victims of Birth Injuries?

Written by Berkowitz

Crying BabyThe birth of a new child is exciting, and is one of the happiest times a couple will ever experience. Unfortunately, if the child sustains a serious injury or trauma during that birth due to a physician’s negligence, the experience can quickly turn from joyful to devastating. According to recent statistics, seven babies out of every 1,000 suffer from some form of birth-related injury in the United States. These injuries are not only tragic, but preventable.

The Parties of a Birth Injury Lawsuit

Parents or legal guardians of the injured newborn have a right under Connecticut law to bring a medical malpractice claim against the negligent healthcare provider on behalf of their child. The law requires parents to initiate their claim within two years from the date of injury or from the date the injury was discovered. Due to the significant financial burden associated with birth-related injuries and caring for a sick or disabled child, most parents will file their claim shortly after they are aware an error has occurred.

Delivering a newborn takes a team of medical professionals. Therefore, the defendants named in a lawsuit may not be limited to a single individual. Parents may list the obstetrician, other physicians, nurses, or other healthcare staff who were present during the birth – and contributed to the injury.

Common Causes of Birth Injuries

Birth injuries can be unavoidable, but most of the time they are preventable – especially so when a physician or team member acts negligently. Some common causes of birth injuries can include, but are not limited to:

  • Use of improper birthing techniques
  • Depriving the newborn of oxygen during or after birth
  • Failure to respond to obvious complications
  • Having inadequate staffing or inadequately trained team members handle important decisions regarding the birth
  • Performing unnecessary crash caesarian sections
  • Use of too much force when delivering the newborn
  • Miscalculation of the fetus size, leading to an emergency C-section or traumatic delivery
  • Delay of proper medical treatment

Damages and Compensation Awarded in Birth Injury Claims

The settlement awarded in a birth injury claim typically offers economic compensation for the child’s short- or long-term medical and financial needs. These damages can include:

  • Medication
  • Medical treatments, hospital visits or admissions, and other required treatments resulting from the injury
  • Specialized equipment or facilities required
  • Physical therapy
  • Compensation to the parents for lost wages while caring for their injured/sick child
  • Compensation for loss of earning potential from the time the child turns 18 until they are of retirement age

Compensation for non-economic damages may also be rewarded, including emotional pain and suffering. The state of Connecticut does not impose damage caps on compensatory damages that are recoverable in a medical malpractice case.

Speak With an Experienced Birth Injury Attorney – Contact Berkowitz and Hanna LLC

The costs and emotional trauma associated with a birth injury are extensive. If your newborn was injured due to a healthcare provider’s negligence, Berkowitz and Hanna LLC is here to help.  Contact our birth injury attorneys online or call us to schedule a consultation.