When a doctor makes a mistake, it can result in a serious health problem or even death.

Understanding the wrongful death of infants

| Jan 19, 2018 | Wrongful Death |

When Washington residents think about wrongful death, they may think of adults who died in work accidents. Infants and fetuses can also die wrongfully and parents may want to understand when the death of their baby is considered wrongful.

Infants might die after birth for many reasons. March of Dimes says that sometimes a baby might incur asphyxia while he or she is being born. This means that the baby is deprived of oxygen. In other situations, problems with the umbilical cord or conditions like preeclampsia may cause a baby to die. Sometimes infections may also result in an infant’s death. These situations may be considered wrongful death if a doctor’s actions caused the baby’s death. This means that a doctor should have realized that a mother had preeclampsia or that she had an infection that might get passed on to the baby. 

Sometimes a birth defect may cause an infant to die. A baby may have lung or heart defects or his or her brain may not have developed correctly. These situations may be considered wrongful death if a doctor realized the infant had a birth defect but did not take action to help the baby develop.

According to FindLaw, a baby’s death is considered wrongful if the medical team was negligent during the birth. This might be the case if a baby incurred a birth injury. Doctors may also be liable if the infant was harmed because of a prescription written for the mother. It is important to remember that not all infant deaths are considered wrongful. Sometimes a baby needs to be born alive in order for parents to bring charges against a medical team. This means that if a baby dies in the womb because of a doctor’s negligence, this may not always be considered wrongful death.