Building a viable medical malpractice case requires time, resources, and lots of evidence. A medical malpractice lawyer can help you with each of those necessities. Evidence, in particular, can be one of the most challenging of the three to obtain.
Below, we’ve provided a run-down of the most important evidence in birth injury cases. Some of it you may have already. Other evidence is easier obtained with assistance from someone connected and experienced in the field of medicine and law.
Birth Injury Evidence Must Demonstrate Medical Negligence
Every bit of evidence collected in a medical malpractice case serves the goal of proving negligence. You will need to gather important evidence that proves four essential facts:
- The doctor treating you and your baby had a duty to provide care.
- The care they provided violated the medical standard of care, and therefore breached that duty.
- Violating the medical standard led to your baby’s birth injury.
- You or your baby suffered damages due to the injury.
Proving that the doctor owed you a duty of care is by far the simplest of the four elements of negligence. It’s as easy as showing a doctor-patient relationship existed when he treated you in prenatal care or delivered the baby. In light of that, let’s skip ahead to the other three types of evidence you need.
Evidence That Shows the Medical Professional Violated the Standard of Care
It’s important that we discuss this evidence first because it is the basis for your entire claim. The state of Maryland requires all medical malpractice claims to be filed in conjunction with a letter called the Certificate of Qualified Expert. This letter must come from a medical professional who practices the same or similar type of medicine as the practitioner named in your case and possesses similar training.
In the letter, a doctor will review your case and affirm whether or not the care you received was the same care or treatment he or she would have provided to you in the same situation. The care they indicate in the letter is deemed the “standard of medical care.” The letter must also attest that departing from that standard caused–or is very likely to have caused–your baby’s birth injury. If both of those criteria are fulfilled, you may have a medical malpractice case and your claim can move forward.
Evidence That Supports Causation
The Certificate of Qualified Expert will indicate if the physician’s actions were the most substantial cause of the birth injury, but that’s just one part of the puzzle. You will also need to gather evidence that supports this. You can do this by tying the physician’s actions to previous behavior for which he was disciplined or complained about. You can also speak to the medical personnel who helped provide your care when the birth injury occurred. Evidence that may help to demonstrate their negligent actions as the cause includes:
- Medical records for mother and baby
- Eyewitness testimony from other medical professionals or administration who assisted with prenatal care or the delivery of the baby, such as nurses, anesthesiologists, and midwives
- Employment history of the medical professional in your case
- Disciplinary records
- Complaints from other patients or medical personnel who previously worked with the doctor
Evidence That Proves Damages in Your Birth Injury Case
The final piece of the puzzle will be the evidence that demonstrates the harm you and your baby have endured due to the doctor’s negligent care. This harm can be financial, physical, psychological, or emotional. These losses are compensable under Maryland law, per Md. Cts. & Jud. Proc. Code §11-109.
In other words, if the birth injury led to other harm, you can claim damages. Damages are the money the negligent party owes you for the losses you incurred due to your injuries. That means you must prove that you have losses.
Examples of evidence to support damages include:
- Photos and video recordings capturing your baby’s injuries and the subsequent impact on your lives
- Medical bills for any and all medically related costs
- Other bills, receipts, or estimates showing the additional necessary costs you’ve incurred due to the birth injury, such as help around the house
- Check stubs, invoices, or work schedules indicating wages you have lost as a result of your baby’s injury, including taking time off work to care for your child
- Expert testimony from medical professionals in the same or related fields of medicine, such as obstetricians or pediatricians.
- Testimony from experts in other fields related to your case, such as mental health practitioners, cognitive development specialists, life-care planners, or economists who can testify to the impact the injury will have on your and your child’s life.
Let Brown & Barron Handle the Evidence in Your Maryland Birth Injury Case
Brown & Barron is your legal advocate for medical malpractice claims in Maryland. An experienced Baltimore birth injury lawyer will do all the legwork in your case. Filing your claim, obtaining qualified experts, and gathering the important evidence in your birth injury case are just a few of the ways we will support you through this difficult time. Call us today to schedule a free case review.