Yes. Any time you or your child suffers an injury or a worsened condition because of a health care provider’s negligence, you can seek compensation for your damages through a medical malpractice claim. As long as the doctor or, as is more frequently the case, the midwife who attended your home birth had an established patient-caregiver relationship with you, he or she is liable for any damages that result from his or her negligence.

Examples of Injuries that Can Occur During a Home Birth

There are many ways a mother or a child can be injured during a home birth. These can include fractures, bruising, and small cuts that can result from rough handling, but generally are not permanent.

Other injuries and conditions can have a much more lasting impact on a newborn and his or her mother. These include:

  • Cerebral or Erb’s Palsy, which can occur when a newborn suffers an injury to the brain or brachial plexus;
  • Brain damage because the newborn could not receive adequate oxygen during birth;
  • Injury to the mother during birth, which could result from insufficient monitoring of her vital signs;
  • Emotional injury to the child’s parents, who will need to live with the struggles of raising a disabled child; and
  • Medication errors that can negatively impact a fetus or mother.

Midwives are highly-trained medical professionals. As such, they monitor pregnancies and can prescribe medication and make medical recommendations. Midwives who have completed nursing school and studies in midwifery are known as Certified Nurse Midwives (CNMs). When a CNM performs a home birth, he or she does so in close collaboration with a physician. Direct-entry midwives, DEMs, are individuals who enter midwife training after apprenticeship and formal study. All midwives must comply with the Midwives Model of Care.

Filing a Malpractice Claim Against a Midwife

If a midwife deviates from the standard of care and this deviation results in an injury to you or your child, you can seek compensation for your damages through a medical malpractice claim. Examples of midwife negligence include:

  • Failing to refer a woman to an obstetrician despite her needing medical care;
  • Failing to notify a mother of a potential birth defect found during a routine ultrasound;
  • Failing to adequately monitor the mother and fetus’ stress levels during labor and birth; and
  • Handling a mother or newborn roughly during labor or birth, causing an injury.

Work with an Experienced Chicago Medical Malpractice Lawyer

If you or your child suffered an injury during a home birth, you can seek compensation for your damages through a medical malpractice claim. To learn more about the medical malpractice claim process, contact our team of experienced medical malpractice lawyers at Baizer Kolar, P.C. today to set up your initial consultation in our office.