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The birth of a child should be one of the happiest days of a parent’s life, but this joy can turn to fear when an infant experiences birth complications. What’s worse, many of these cases are preventable. Negligent hospital staff can put a baby’s life at risk, often leaving them physically or mentally disabled for the rest of their lives. A lack of professional care during and after the birth can leave an infant fighting to survive.
We have worked with countless families who have had their worlds shaken by doctors who didn’t do their jobs, and we work to right their wrongs. If your child experienced a birth injury as a result of negligence or malpractice, then you could qualify for compensation to help pay your medical bills and other expenses.
In the wake of a birth injury, you can feel powerless, putting all of your energy into helping their child. You’re so focused on helping your newborn make it through the next day and working to make sure he or she has a normal life that it seems impossible to think about the future.
However, if you have a child with a birth injury, having a plan for the future is more important than ever. You need to help them through the next few weeks and the rest of their entire life.
Console and Associates can help. We will review your case to determine what you deserve as a result of medical negligence. Our birth injury lawyers can make sure you get what you need to help your child as they grow.
Birth injuries occur in hospitals across PA and the rest of the country every day. According to the National Healthcare Quality Report, AHRQ, DHHS, there are roughly seven birth injuries per 1,000 births in the United States. This means there are more than 28,000 babies born across the United States with some sort of birth injury each year or more than 75 per day.
Doctors could prevent almost half of these injuries with the right medical care and doctor attention. But instead of protecting the innocent, children like your own must live with the consequences of their malpractice.
If your child suffers from an injury that occurred at birth, they will face significant challenges throughout their life that most other children won’t. They need someone to help them, and we’re here for that.
The lawyers at Console and Associates can make sure they have the funds they need to help them through life, whether they need physical therapy, additional surgeries, or even lifelong care.
The CDC found that medical bills for children who grow up with birth injuries, including cerebral palsy and intellectual disabilities, are significantly higher than their able-bodied peers:
It’s okay if you feel overwhelmed with medical needs, physical therapy, and childcare. Most parents with healthy babies feel overwhelmed at times, and you have even more to deal with than they do.
The doctors had a responsibility to protect your child. Instead, their malpractice harmed your baby. Now, these doctors are responsible for your child’s condition and should help give them the medical care they need to live their best life.
Many people ask us what a settlement actually covers. They typically have a particular expense in mind (like medical bills or the cost of an upcoming surgery). However, a negligent malpractice case covers a variety of expenses to account for your financial setbacks and emotional trauma as the result of birth injury malpractice.
The birth injury attorneys at Console and Associates conduct a high-level review of your case and then start digging deeper to understand what you are going through. We understand there is an emotional element to birth injuries, not just a physical or financial one. We want to help you through these difficult times and make sure you’re prepared for the future.
Your claim can include the following damages:
We want to make sure that you’re covered not just for your past bills, but for any future problems that could arise.
Disclaimer: Results may vary depending on your particular facts and legal circumstances.
In a landmark case, one family in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania received $41.6 million dollars when a judge determined the doctor caused severe brain injury to the infant during birth.
The doctor used forceps when there was no medical need to do so. The forceps was “misapplied” and pulled the baby’s head with excessive force. As a result of the doctor’s actions, the infant was immediately treated for skull fractures that caused brain bleeding and destruction to the cerebellum.
As a result of the doctor’s negligence, these parents will never see their little boy ride a bicycle or play outside. He will not be able to read or write or even walk. Instead, he will spend his life confined to a motorized scooter under supervision at a medical institution.
The judge awarded the money to cover the child’s expenses throughout his life, so he can receive the care he needs and the family doesn’t have to foot the bill for the doctor’s negligence.
In 2017, one family received $3 million in a case against a Delaware obstetrician who also pulled the baby’s head and neck forcefully during delivery. The doctor was trying to dislodge the baby’s right shoulder, but instead caused permanent nerve damage that left the child’s right arm paralyzed.
What should’ve been a moment of joy for the new parents became one of fear and uncertainty? The family lives in Harrisburg and uses the funds from their settlement to cover the cost of arm-mobility surgery for their son.
One family in Kansas recently received $4.72 million after a judge found their daughter’s cerebral palsy was preventable. Doctors delivered the newborn through an emergency cesarean section. The baby was permanently injured because of the nurse’s inability to identify symptoms of catastrophic umbilical cord compression.
Upon reviewing the case, their legal team found there were plenty of opportunities to identify signs of stress by the baby. Both doctors and nurses ignored these signs and didn’t check on the mother or baby to see if they were okay.
Due to a lack of oxygen, the baby suffers from traumatic brain injuries and cerebral palsy. She will never walk, talk, or be able to work on her own. In this child’s case, the $4.72 million covers pain and suffering for the family, as well as care for the child throughout her life.
You’ve got questions about what your child is entitled to and how to get a birth injury claim started in Pennsylvania. We’ve got all the answers you need. Here are the most common questions we hear, but if you still want to learn more, give us a call.
We offer all our clients a No Fee Promise to make sure they get the compensation they deserve.
You shouldn’t avoid working with a birth trauma lawyer because you’re afraid that you don’t have the money to afford help. If your child suffered from a birth injury, then you will need these funds for their future care.
The statute of limitations is the amount of time you have to file a claim after the incident of malpractice. These statutes vary depending on the state and charge. In Pennsylvania, the statute of limitations for medical malpractice and negligence is typically two years. Since your claim is on behalf of your child, you will have a longer time to act. For minors, the statute typically doesn’t begin until their 18th birthday, and it doesn’t end until the day they turn 20 years old.
However, you don’t have to wait until your injured infant turns 18. In fact, you shouldn’t. Every day you wait endangers the claim. Lost evidence and forgotten details make it hard to assemble a strong case against the hospital, meaning you might have a hard time bringing a case against it. Additionally, starting the claims process sooner can help you get the money your child needs for medical care sooner, perhaps even resulting in a better prognosis. If you feel that your child is a victim of medical malpractice, contact us as soon as possible.
Most birth injury lawsuits end in mediation. Our lawyers will meet with the hospital’s legal team to determine whether negligence occurred and what amount you should receive. If we are unable to reach an agreement with their team, there is a chance that your case will go to court.
We do our best to handle the bulk of the work and process related to your case. You won’t have to spend hours in our offices and can handle most of the paperwork from the comfort of your home. Our experienced lawyers will handle the calls with the hospital and insurance companies on your behalf, letting you focus on your family. Even if your case does go before a judge, we will do our best to make sure you don’t feel overwhelmed or uncomfortable with the process.
The timeline of your case varies depending on many factors. More complicated cases take longer, but we always try to settle your claim as quickly as possible while still maximizing your compensation.
Cases that are older also tend to take longer. If you waited until the end of the statute of limitations to file your case, then it could take longer to collect testimonials and evidence. This is another reason why it is better to file your claim sooner rather than later.
Medical malpractice means your child suffered injuries that they shouldn’t have. This means they are in pain and lack the mental or physical functions that they should have. Medical malpractice also means you have to pay for additional treatments and miss time from work to correct their mistakes.
Not only should you seek compensation for your medical bills, even if your insurance company paid them, you should also file a claim for pain and suffering, lost wages, and potential future expenses.
Parents must file a birth injury claim on behalf of their child, and most settlements go to the child in the form of a trust. This helps the settlement cover necessary expenses for the rest of the child’s life.
In some cases, a settlement might award damages to parents in the form of lost wages or lost future income. If this happens, the parents receive their settlement separate from the one used by
When you call us, you can feel confident that we’ll fight to get you the money you deserve.
Set up a free consultation today to discuss your case. We are here to listen to you and hear about your experience. Call today or contact us online to get started.
Some injuries are minor and will heal on their own within a few weeks, while others can be life-threatening or leave an infant physically and mentally disabled.
Understanding what these medical terms mean and how common they are can help you learn about your current condition and birth injury case. Each year, thousands of parents face a struggle to cope with preventable birth injuries that affect their children. You’re not alone, and you have a support system ready to help make sure that you can take care of your child.
There are many causes of cerebral palsy, including low birth weight, bacterial infections, and head trauma at birth. The condition affects cells related to muscle tone, strength, and coordination, along with intellectual impairment. Many of the symptoms aren’t noticed at first and, develop with the first three to five years of a child’s life.
CP symptoms vary depending on severity, but a few common signs include:
Children with CP symptoms can experience muscle tightness and involuntary or shaky movements. The condition can affect the entire body or part of the body. Every cerebral palsy case is different, depending on the time of the trauma and when symptoms present themselves.
Bell’s Palsy is a condition of temporary facial paralysis due to nerve damage. Pressure on the baby’s face during delivery could damage facial nerves, and the baby could be unable to close one eye or move its face when crying. Facial paralysis can happen naturally, or it could be the result of forceps pressure when not used carefully.
If the nerves are only bruised, then the newborn should regain facial control within a few weeks, but damaged or torn nerves need additional surgery.
Brachial Palsy is also referred to as neonatal brachial plexus palsy (NBPP) in newborns. It occurs when there is damage to the brachial plexus (or the group of nerves located around the shoulder area) during birth. The result of this injury is a general weakness or a loss of movement in the arms.
A brachial plexus injury tends to affect the upper arm and shoulder, and the less common Klumpke paralysis affects the lower arm and hand.
Damage to the brachial plexus can occur during a breech delivery, if the baby is large, or if the shoulder area gets stuck in the birth canal. All these conditions make it hard for the doctor to deliver the baby safely quickly.
Brachial Palsy is typically noticed soon after birth, as the infant isn’t moving its arm, or has a decreased grip in one hand. Treatment typically lasts for a few weeks, but the baby may need surgery if the nerve damage is severe.
A Cephalohematoma is a collection of blood that pools underneath a child’s scalp. They typically occur as a result of head trauma, like the baby’s head banging against the mother’s pelvic bone, and are common in vacuum-assisted deliveries.
One effect of a Cephalohematoma is an increased risk of jaundice in the first few days after birth. Jaundice is the yellowing of an infant as a result of an immature liver, infection, or blood disorder. While jaundice is common, it can require hospitalization for phototherapy treatment. Left untreated, jaundiced newborns can suffer a type of brain damage called kernicterus.
Cephalohematoma presents in the form of a bump on the child’s head and should disappear without significant problems within a few months.
Conversely, a subdural hematoma is more severe and is the result of significant brain trauma. Roughly 20 to 30 percent of people regain full brain function after an acute subdural hematoma, but chronic subdural hematomas are smaller and less severe. Many grown adults develop chronic subdural hematomas as they age but often lack any symptoms.
Spinal cord injuries could be the result of blunt force trauma, a bruise (also known as a contusion), or from a tear. The majority of infant spinal cord damage occurs around the neck and shoulders, as opposed to along the lower or middle part of the back. Unfortunately, the higher the spinal cord injury, the more severe it tends to be.
Spinal cord injury symptoms vary widely depending on the severity and the location of the damage. They include an inability to move, abnormal reflexes, weakness, and difficulty breathing. While many spinal cord injuries aren’t severe enough to cause permanent damage, some can leave children paralyzed for the rest of their lives.
Bone fractures are one of the most common types of birth injury, and they typically occur around the head, collarbone, and shoulder area. Fractures occur when babies are delivered in a breech position or when the shoulder gets stuck within the birth canal.
While sometimes unpreventable even in the best care, bone fractures could be a sign that the doctor was rough with the delivery or did not properly check the baby’s position before trying to deliver it.
Along with damage to nerves and bones, a lack of oxygen during the delivery process can also affect a child’s brain function. While many babies can recover from a brief lack of oxygen without major signs of damage, serious instances can lead to speech and language impairment, physical developmental problems, and conditions like cerebral palsy.
Call us today. We’ll listen to your story and let you know what legal options you have.