Do Time and Place of Delivery Contribute to Birth Injuries?

Published on March 15th, 2019

delivery room birth injuries thurswell lawThere is a lot going on in the delivery room. Laboring mothers have enough on their minds without having to worry about additional complications that could arise from the day and time their body decides to give birth. Recent research, however, has shown that there are some unsettling factors that influence whether a mother will have a successful delivery, a postnatal complication, or a baby with a birth injury.

Preventable Problems in the Delivery Room

Problems do arise in delivery – some can’t be helped and must simply be reacted to, others are preventable and caused by lack of attention, inexperience, or poor decisions. All situations can potentially lead to birth injuries for the mother, baby, or both.

Looking at maternal complications in over 2 million births, according to a study published in Risk Analysis, 21,000 women had one or more complications that could have been reasonably controlled for a calm, easy, healthy birth. The complications included:

  • Severe perineal laceration
  • Uterine rupture
  • Unplanned hysterectomy
  • Admission to ICU
  • Unplanned operating procedure after delivery

What’s most surprising and concerning is that the time of day and the hospital in which a mother is laboring are incredibly influential in determining whether there are any complications during delivery.

When and Where a Mother Delivers Can Influence Likelihood of a Birth Injury

Deliveries that take place on weekdays during the day had lower risk for complications. The likelihood of complications during the night shift, however, was 21percent higher, on weekends it was 9 percent higher, and 29 percent higher on holidays. Terrifying for women who go into labor on the Fourth of July, Thanksgiving, or Christmas.

There is also a 28 percent increased risk for birth injuries in teaching hospitals, particularly in the month of July when new residents begin their training. By the following June, this stat was rendered insignificant, so at least residents are learning on the job – but mothers and babies suffer in the process.

Improving Hospital Labor and Delivery Departments

As with all studies, questions have arisen and they are focused on determining whether complications during delivery can be reduced:

  • Can schedules be rearranged?
  • Can staff be increased?
  • Are more experienced physicians needed?
  • Are more nurses needed?

Not only do adjustments in hospital practices and labor and delivery efforts help mothers have easier and safer births, being proactive can help hospitals reduce their costs – especially if a tragedy results and leads to a medical malpractice lawsuit.

If you or your baby has suffered a birth injury, contact the birth injury lawyers at Thurswell Law. Our Michigan attorneys will help you get justice and compensation for your family’s suffering. Schedule a consultation by calling (248) 354-2222 today. We do not charge any fees unless you collect.

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