According to the American Board of Professional Liability Attorneys (ABPLA), medical malpractice occurs when a health care professional or medical facility causes injury to a patient through a negligent act or omission. And unfortunately, Erb’s palsy is among medical conditions that stem from preventable medical mistakes.
This condition is characterized by arm weakness and loss of motion, which causes paralysis in newborns. It’s typically caused by physical injury during newborn delivery or traumatic force downward on the upper arm and shoulder, damaging the brachial plexus. As such, you may consider pursuing a medical malpractice case to help seek justice for your infant. Read on to learn how to navigate this type of case.
How to establish you have a medical malpractice case
The first step in pursuing compensation is to establish if you have a medical malpractice case. First, you need to prove that a doctor-patient relationship existed between you and your physician. In this case, the healthcare professional owed a duty of care to you, as the patient and your child, during pregnancy, labor or delivery.
Once the duty of care is established, the next step is demonstrating that the healthcare provider breached their duty. For example, in the context of a birth-related paralysis case, this would involve showing that the medical professional’s actions or omissions deviated from the accepted standard of care.
Furthermore, there must be a direct link between the healthcare provider’s breach of duty and the resulting injury or harm. In the case of a child being born paralyzed, it would involve demonstrating that the medical professional’s negligence caused the paralysis. If all these requirements are met, you can sue the physician for damages, including:
- Physical pain
- Medical expenses
- Ongoing healthcare needs
- Emotional distress
The importance of seeking professional guidance
As you can tell, determining whether you have a medical malpractice case requires a thorough review of the specific circumstances and medical records. Therefore, seeking guidance early in the process is crucial to help you understand your legal rights.