Can I File a Medical Malpractice Lawsuit for Prenatal Care?
Posted in Medical Malpractice on April 21, 2021
Prenatal care is a delicate and important form of treatment. During pregnancy, mothers need to attend regular appointments to ensure healthy fetal development and monitor for common complications, such as ectopic pregnancy or birth abnormalities. The medical professionals responsible for overseeing prenatal treatment must uphold a certain standard of care. If an obstetrician, nurse, or other worker commits an act of negligence that harms a pregnant woman or her child, the patient may file a medical malpractice lawsuit against him or her.
Why Is Prenatal Care Important?
Proper prenatal care is vital to ensure the safety of mother and child during pregnancy. During regular intervals of the pregnancy, an obstetrician or other qualified healthcare professional will examine the fetus to ensure that the child is developing properly. The medical provider will also monitor the mother for common prenatal complications, including the following.
- Ectopic pregnancy
- Placenta previa
- Gestational diabetes
- Breech position
- High blood pressure
These conditions, among others, are common among pregnant women in the United States. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, more than 50,000 women experience the most severe pregnancy complications each year. It is the responsibility of the prenatal medical team to proactively monitor the health of mothers and their babies.
Common Types of Prenatal Care Negligence
While regular prenatal appointments and a competent physician can help mothers avoid preventable complications, negligence may occur. Medical professionals have a duty to uphold a certain standard of care, and if their actions deviate from the accepted standard, they commit an act of negligence. Common examples of prenatal medical negligence include the following.
- Failure to diagnose or monitor for common prenatal complications
- Failure to identify a birth defect in a timely manner
- Failure to diagnose an ectopic pregnancy in a timely manner
- Failure to refer a patient to a specialist when necessary
- Prescribing the wrong medication or the wrong dosage
- The use of improper birthing techniques, such as forceps or vacuums
Legal Options for Prenatal Malpractice Victims
If you are a Missouri resident who experienced negligence during prenatal care, you have the right to file a lawsuit against the healthcare provider responsible for the malpractice. However, you only have grounds to file a claim if the malpractice resulted in injury to you or your child. Additionally, you will need to prove four key elements to establish your right to compensation.
- The at-fault medical professional owed you or your child a duty of care at the time of the malpractice.
- The at-fault professional breached his or her duty of care through a negligent act or failure to act.
- You or your child suffered injuries as a direct result of the at-fault party’s breach of duty.
- You or your child sustained damages that you can collect in your lawsuit.
Proving a prenatal malpractice claim can be difficult. You will need to consult with medical experts to determine if the at-fault party’s actions deviated from the medical standard of care. You will need to conduct an in-depth investigation into the malpractice and gather sufficient evidence to prove your claims. While recovering from a prenatal injury, these complex litigation processes can be challenging to navigate.
In these situations, you need a Kansas City medical malpractice lawyer on your side. A prenatal injury attorney has the knowledge, resources, and experience necessary to guide you through the lawsuit process and advocate for you and your child’s best interests. Contact an attorney as soon as possible to discuss your optimal path to recovery.