Midwife Malpractice: Can Midwives Be Liable for Birth Injuries?
When you find out you are expecting a baby, there are many decisions to be made. One such decision is where and who you will deliver your baby. While a majority of U.S. births occur within the walls of a hospital, some expectant parents will decide to give birth at a birthing center or in their own homes under the supervision of licensed midwives. Much like an obstetrician in a hospital, a midwife has a duty to keep both mother and baby safe and failure to do so may result in midwife malpractice.
Defining the Roles of Midwives
Midwives are not classified as physicians, rather they may work alongside physicians and nurses in a hospital or work in a birthing center. A midwife is a licensed healthcare provider who is trained to provide care during pregnancy, birth and postpartum care. They are also able to provide standard women’s healthcare services such as routine gynecological exams and breast cancer screening.
Midwives in a Medical Malpractice Case
No matter where your midwife is assisting you with your birth, malpractice may still happen if they choose to act negligently, do a procedure beyond their licensure or cause a birth injury. Before you choose to work with a midwife, you must evaluate if you are a good candidate for an unmedicated birth or a birth outside of a hospital setting.
If you choose to have a birth outside of a hospital with knowledge of a prior medical condition or other health risks, it would not be considered malpractice since you were aware of the risks before delivery.
Examples of Midwife Malpractice
Midwives hold very different roles during birth, but one constant remains the same — their dedication to the safety and well-being of both mother and child. When a midwife is negligent during pregnancy or the birthing process, there are many midwife malpractice cases that may be filed. These include:
- Failure to monitor mother and/or baby before, during or after birth;
- Failure to refer if an emergency c-section or additional procedure is needed;
- Exerting too much force during delivery and causing a birth injury;
- Failing to properly sterilize equipment before or during delivery; or
- Failure to act in times of maternal or fetal distress.
Filing a Claim For Midwife Malpractice
If you believe you have experienced a birth injury due to the negligence of a midwife, it is best to speak with a midwife malpractice attorney to evaluate your next steps. Our team has extensive experience in birth injuries and medical malpractice cases throughout Missouri, and we are ready to help you and your family move forward. Contact us to learn more and schedule a free consultation.
Missouri Medical Malpractice Lawyer
If you have suffered as a result of medical malpractice, contact our legal team right away. Waiting to seek legal representation can prevent you from filing a claim and receiving the compensation you deserve.
Contact Zevan Davidson Roman today.
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