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Women giving birth at risk of medical malpractice

Michigan women who are eagerly awaiting the birth of a child should be filled with excitement and anticipation, not fear. Yet, a new study conducted by USA Today shows that expecting mothers may be at more risk of harm than many realize. For these women and their families, medical malpractice can change their lives for the worse and for years, or even decades, to come.

According to the study, 50,000 mothers suffer serious injuries during childbirth, and another 700 die. What is even scarier is the fact that the study found that half of all of these cases, both fatal and nonfatal, could easily have been prevented. A majority of the harm was caused by high-blood pressure, known as hypertension, and hemorrhaging. Both of these medical conditions can be quickly identified by carrying out various tests, and, once identified, they can be dealt with effectively.

However, for whatever reason, medical professionals are foregoing certain safety practices, thereby putting women at risk of harm and death. Making matters worse is that many organizations that hold sway over these hospitals have failed to address the issue. Reporting standards are also too lax. Also, in some instances of medical malpractice, negligent hospitals and doctors turn the focus on the victim, blaming things, such as weight, age, and unhealthy lifestyle when in reality the incident in question could have been prevented.

So what are victims and their families left to do? To start, they can advocate for themselves and others by contacting their governmental representatives and requesting change. But, such change is often slow and does little to help those who have already been harmed. Therefore, these victims need to consider taking legal action, as it may be the only way for them to obtain immediate accountability. By working with a skilled legal professional, these individuals may be able to build a case strong enough to impose liability and recover compensation for the damages they have suffered. Hopefully then they will be able to focus on the bigger picture and reclaiming as much of their lives as possible.

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Goethel Engelhardt, PLLC

3049 Miller Road
Ann Arbor, MI 48103

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