Midwives are healthcare professionals focusing on pregnancy, labor and delivery, and postpartum care for newborns and mothers. Often holistic in their approach, midwives may assist with alternative birthing arrangements, such as at-home or water births, along with deliveries in medical settings.
Midwives focus on low-intervention and low-risk births. In some states, such as New Jersey and New York, midwives can practice independently of a physician. In others, including Pennsylvania, a collaborative agreement between midwife and physician is required. Even under these conditions, however, error and oversight can lead to serious injury for mother and child.
Examples of Midwife Malpractice
Medical malpractice occurs when an injury results from a healthcare provider, such as a midwife, failing to provide the accepted standard of care. This may include:
- Failure to properly monitor for fetal distress
- Improper or aggressive methods of delivery
- Failure to consult with or inform a physician of labor difficulties or fetal distress
- Improper administration of medications, herbs, or supplements
Several steps and missteps can result in a birth injury. If your child was injured during labor or delivery and you suspect midwife malpractice played a role, it is a good idea to consult with an experienced lawyer who can assess your claim to help you determine the next best steps.
Our Experience with Midwife Malpractice
Kline & Specter, PC has more than 50 attorneys, five of whom are also medical doctors (including two OB/GYNs), the largest number of doctor/lawyers working for any firm in the United States. Skilled, experienced, and relentless, our firm seeks to set a precedent in addition to securing compensation for our clients, helping to improve safety standards, and working to protect others from similar injuries.
Some of our notable birth injury cases include:
- $57 million for a child whose cerebral palsy was linked to oxygen deprivation during delivery
- $42.9 million for a child who suffered several injuries due to delayed admission and failure to administer proper medication. At the time, this was one of the largest medical malpractice verdicts in the state of Pennsylvania
- $42 million for a botched forceps delivery that resulted in brain injury
- $21.6 million for a child left “profoundly disabled” following oxygen deprivation. A midwife had administered CERVIDIL® to induce labor, but failed to monitor for fetal distress
- $20 million for a child blinded at birth due to inadequate care. This remains the most significant medical malpractice verdict in Montgomery County history
Kline & Specter maintains offices in Pennsylvania, Delaware, New Jersey, and New York. In addition, we work with firms outside of these jurisdictions for national cases.