Things Parents Should Know After a Child Has Suffered a Birth Injury
Michele Mirman | Medical Malpractice | August 1, 2016
Infants injured during birth unfortunately usually face a vast number of life-long challenges. Some difficulties are immediately identifiable. For example, parents naturally expect that children with birth injuries will need special medical care and assistance. Other challenges, however, may not be apparent or surface for many years.
The Difficulties a Birth Injured Victim Can Face
One of the most common birth injuries cerebral palsy can inflict children with numerous challenges throughout their lives, including:
- Limb deformities
- Intellectual deficits and learning disabilities
- Lifetime physical therapy
- Multiple surgeries
- Constant care and supervision
- Special schooling
- Adaptive devices
- Difficulty finding employment
- Need for lifetime care
It costs a tremendous amount to treat and care for a victim of a birth injury, and parents often need the help of skilled professionals to recognize the issues and get help. A skilled doctor should be able to identify signs of a birth injury that may not be recognizable to a new parent.
Then, if a birth injury is detected, parents should seek experienced legal counsel right away. A seasoned birth injury lawyer can take legal action against responsible medical professionals for their wrongdoing in order to obtain sufficient compensation to provide lifetime care for the injured child. An attorney can also help parents find programs to support, teach and care for their child.
Pay Close Attention to Child’s Physical Development
Children should be able to lift their head, roll over, sit up, crawl, and walk as they grow; a child is expected to make sounds, say words, and speak sentences; children should be able to pay attention, sit still, and follow directions, in increasing amounts, as they grow.
If a child is not reaching his or her milestones, or a child’s walking appears abnormal, a serious problem may exist. If parents suspect their child is not developing properly, they should consult a doctor as soon as possible to determine what is wrong. Parents should obtain a complete evaluation in order to ensure their child did not sustain a birth injury without their knowledge.
A skilled attorney can examine the records of the medical professionals and determine if legal action should be taken.
Obtain and Take Time to Understand Scientific Evidence
A newborn’s health is determined based on the APGAR scoring system. This system analyzes the following qualities in order to determine a child’s health:
A low APGAR score can mean that your child is suffering from birth injuries. Because these situations can be highly complex, however, parents should not try to collect data or interpret data on their own. Instead, parents should seek professional assistance, both from doctors and lawyers.
A Child’s Cerebral Palsy Does Not Have to Be Severe for a Parent to Have a Case
Even the mildest birth injuries can seriously affect someone’s life, preventing them from performing tasks, attending school, or finding employment. Unfortunately, many parents fail to seek professional help because they believe that mild conditions may not be enough to file a lawsuit. However, difficulty performing the simplest tasks can be a sign that a child may face profound lifetime problems later on.
In New York State, Seek Legal Help Within 10 Years of Your Child’s Birth.
PARENTS IN NEW YORK STATE HAVE AT MOST 10 YEARS TO BRING A LAWSUIT FOR MEDICAL MALPRACTICE FOR THEIR CHILD.
In New York State, children have 2 ½ years from their 18th birthday to commence a medical malpractice action, provided that the action is commenced no later than 10 years from the date of malpractice, the last date of continuous treatment, or the date when a foreign body was discovered or could reasonably have been discovered.
If the malpractice has occurred at a City or State hospital, a notice of claim must be filed within 90 days after the malpractice and a lawsuit started within 1 year and 90 days thereafter, or a lawyer must make a motion to the Court to permit late filing. The rules regarding filing claims and starting lawsuit are complicated. It is therefore crucial that parents should seek legal assistance right away if they suspect their child is facing challenges due to a birth injury.
What Should A Parent Do If a Child Has Birth Injuries?
If parents believe their child has suffered a birth injury, as soon as possible, parents should make sure they obtain the right help and support, so that they are best able to care for their child. This includes seeking out:
- Experienced doctors, usually pediatric neurologists and pediatric orthopedists
- Seasoned attorneys who have experience in medical malpractice cases
- Depending on the age of your child, life-care planners, educational psychologists, and physical and occupational therapists
Together, this group of professionals can examine a child’s conditions to determine what their needs are, the difficulties the child will face, and the strategies parents can use to take care of the child.
Has Your Child Suffered a Birth Injury? Contact Mirman, Markovits & Landau, P.C.
If your child has suffered a birth injury and you believe a doctor, hospital, midwife, or other medical professional is responsible, we encourage you to get in touch with our New York birth injury lawyers right away. When you entrust us with your case, we will examine every detail of your situation to craft the strongest case possible. Because we understand these types of cases can be stressful and emotional, we work diligently to handle all the complicated legal matters so your family can focus on the care of your child.
To discuss your case with a New York birth injury attorney, call Mirman, Markovits & Landau, P.C. We will provide you with a free case evaluation, and you will not pay a single penny in attorney fees unless we recover compensation for you.