September 1, 2015

For most parents, the birth of a child is a joyous occasion. But for parents who experience wrongful death in Washington, D.C., this event becomes tragic when an infant dies because of a birth injury or medical mistake. Sadly, incidents involving infant wrongful death are often preventable and the cause of improper actions by negligent physicians, nurses, or poorly administered hospitals.

What is infant wrongful death?
Wrongful death is a legal term to describe when death results from another’s negligent or improper actions. In cases involving birth injuries, the medical provider may be subject to a malpractice claim for the death of the child, death of the mother, or both. These cases rarely involve intentional acts, but plaintiffs may also accuse the responsible medical provider of committing manslaughter. However, laws regarding manslaughter vary by state, so it’s important to discuss the case with a local medical malpractice attorney.

How are cases examined?
Infant Wrongful Death in Washington DCIn bringing an infant wrongful death claim, the medical malpractice attorney generally looks at the events that transpired before, during and after delivery. This allows the medical malpractice attorney, with the help of medical experts, to determine whether the medical staff was responsible for the birth injury or death. In some cases, a baby is develops normally before birth, but suffers a birth injury because of difficult labor and delivery. Additionally, in cases of stillborn birth, the physicians and medical staff aren’t always to blame. For example, if the mother was in an accident or suffered other trauma, this harm may be the cause of the infant’s death. However, if the treating doctor’s failure to provide medical intervention led to the stillborn birth, then he or she may be held accountable.

What injuries can result in wrongful death?
Many types of birth injuries can result in wrongful death, but the most common include oxygen deprivation, reduced blood flow and traumatic delivery injuries. Before and during labor, doctors and nurses in the delivery room need to carefully monitor the infant’s oxygen supply. If the umbilical cord wraps around the infant’s neck or the stress of labor results in limited oxygen flow, it could lead to hypoxia death.