Medical malpractice involves a medical professional committing gross negligence or failing to provide correct or adequate care, resulting in considerable, damaging effects. The Medical Malpractice Center reports that it is the 3rd most common cause of fatalities in the U.S., with 195,000 individuals perishing in hospitals each year as a result of preventable errors.
One form of medical malpractice is birth infections, either in the mother or the infant. These may lead to serious, long-term consequences for newborns.
1. Cerebral palsy
Untreated or undertreated maternal infections may lead to the fetus developing conditions like cerebral palsy. For instance, a pregnant woman who contracts a Group B Strep Infection and does not receive proper care may pass on meningitis to her baby that causes it.
2. Brain damage
Besides cerebral palsy, infections in expecting mothers may also cause damage to babies’ brains. Listeriosis, Toxoplasmosis, Group B Strep Infection and chorioamnionitis are only a few examples of maternal infections that may harm unborn infants’ brains.
3. Permanent disabilities
Blindness, hearing loss and intellectual disabilities may also result from improperly addressed infections. Disfigurement is another possibility.
Not every birth case where the mother had an infection involves preventable damage. However, in cases where steps may have kept the harm from occurring, the healthcare professionals may bear liability. Kentucky has a one-year statute of limitations regarding birth injury medical malpractice claims, with two exceptions: It does not apply if the afflicted individual sustains harm before turning eighteen and wishes to file after reaching that age (the deadline is then one year after the eighteenth birthday) and if the injury remains undiscovered for a period (in which case, the family has one year from the discovery to file).