Can EMT and Paramedic Negligence Cause Birth Injuries?

Our attorneys regularly receive questions about medical malpractice and negligence.  One question recently asked was, “Can EMT and paramedic negligence cause birth injuries?”  Here, we will answer that question and also provide more information about how EMT and paramedic negligence factors into medical malpractice.

Can EMT and Paramedic Negligence Cause Birth Injuries?

Can EMT and Paramedic Negligence Cause Birth Injuries?

The short answer to this question is, yes.  Emergency medical technicians (EMTs) and paramedics are equally as vulnerable to mistakes or negligence as any other healthcare provider.  Some common examples of EMT and paramedic negligence include:

  • Failure to maintain appropriate certifications
  • Failure to properly staff and equip ambulances
  • Negligent driving behavior
  • Failure to properly evaluate patients
  • Failure to respond to calls in a timely manner
  • Failure to create and maintain accurate records
  • Failure to properly use medical equipment and devices
  • Administering incorrect medication or dosage

It is often difficult to consider that these professionals who are trained to respond quickly and adeptly to the most traumatic situations could behave in a way that does more harm than good.  Unfortunately, EMT and paramedic negligence does happen, and the results can be devastating to you and your family.

Is EMT and Paramedic Negligence Medical Malpractice?

Medical malpractice laws generally apply to any healthcare provider who has a responsibility to diagnose, treat, or otherwise care for patients.  When it comes to EMTs and paramedics, the laws are a bit more difficult to define.

Most states have very strict protections for first responders to protect them from being sued.  These laws are designed to protect the important role of emergency services and ensure that there is adequate staff to respond to emergency situations.

These laws do not, however, prevent a patient from filing a lawsuit if the EMT or paramedic behaves in a blatantly negligent, reckless, or criminal manner.  In such situations where it is determined that the EMT or paramedic failed to use reasonable care, the victim may be able to pursue a medical malpractice lawsuit.

Determining if your case qualifies as medical malpractice requires the guidance of a skilled attorney.  Please contact us today to learn more about medical malpractice laws, your rights, and your legal options.

EMT and Paramedic Negligence and Birth Injuries

Even in the best of circumstances, labor and delivery can be a challenging, lengthy experience.  EMTs and paramedics often have basic training and an understanding of this process, but are generally not equipped to manage complications or severe maternal or fetal emergencies.  Often, first responders are tasked with doing their best until they can get the mother and child to a nearby hospital.  Their actions during this time can literally mean the difference between life or death.

Just like any healthcare provider, EMTs and paramedics must respond to emergency medical situations in a manner that meets their duty of care to the patient.  They must be able to recognize and treat medical conditions in a timely, accurate manner.  Some examples of cases where EMT or paramedic negligence led to birth injuries include:

  • Anesthesia complications resulting in a severe brain injury.
  • Failure to recognize or treat breathing difficulties resulting in brain damage or cerebral palsy.
  • Improper resuscitation or intubation causing injury, brain damage, or death.
  • Excessive force or improper use of delivery tools, such as forceps, which may result in brachial plexus injuries, bruising, or fractures.
  • Delayed delivery, which may result in a variety of injuries to the baby or mother.
  • Burns caused by improper use of heating pads or blankets.

Determining if you Have a Case

If your child was injured due to negligent care by an EMT or paramedic, you undoubtedly can benefit from contacting a medical malpractice and birth injury attorney to determine if you have a case.  Determining if medical malpractice has occurred requires a thorough knowledge of applicable laws, standards of care, and the protections offered to first responders.  Any medical malpractice lawsuit is challenging, but those against an EMT or paramedic are even more so.

We will investigate your situation and help you determine the best course of action for protecting your rights and your family.  Our team has the knowledge and resources you need to stand up and fight for the justice you deserve.

To learn more about how we can help you, fill out the form on your screen.  We proudly offer every client a free case review, and will do our very best to help you move forward from this difficult time in your life.

Sources:

  • https://www.nolo.com/legal-encyclopedia/medical-malpractice-during-emergencies-29632.html
  • http://www.alllaw.com/articles/nolo/medical-malpractice/liability-lawsuits-involving-emts-paramedics.html