Who Could be Liable for a HIE Injury to a Newborn?

Learn Who Could be Liable for Causing HIE to a Newborn: Oregon Medical Malpractice Lawyer


Hypoxic-ischemic encephalopathy, or HIE, is a very debilitating and rather catastrophic injury to a newborn.  This is because it is brain damage caused by a shortage of oxygen via lack of blood flow to a newborn.  This injury results in damage to the developing brain, usually in the form of lesions, and can result in cerebral palsy and intellectual or cognitive disfunction.  The reason why HIE is so devastating is that an infant’s developing brain is rapidly growing and making connections.  Thus, when there is a lack of oxygen which results in lesions to the brain, this stunts, mixes up signals, or even prevents certain normal brain development.  This means that a newborn’s brain will not be able to fully development possibly due to Oregon medical malpractice.


Indeed, it is unfortunately the case that Oregon medical malpractice is likely to blame for HIE.  This is because HIE is caused by a lack of blood flow to the brain which creates a decrease in oxygen.  These are very preventable issues which could be guarded by a healthcare provider.  However, many times the OB-GYN or labor and delivery floor at a hospital are completely overwhelmed.  This means that they could fail to exercise the proper amount of care necessary to treat a mother and the newborn.  


Who Could be Liable for HIE Injuries?


While this sounds like it may be an excuse for medical malpractice, it is not; a hospital most adequately staff its departments and have staff ready and available to assist.  Thus, the first entity that could be liable for a HIE injury to a newborn is a hospital.  Proper staffing is essential to continuing an operating a labor and delivery department and inadequate staffing numbers are just dangerous.


The next most likely to be liable would be the nursing staff.  Yes, the nursing staff and not the medical doctors.  This is because the nursing staff is really the eyes and ears of the labor and delivery ward.  They set up the monitoring of the mother and baby, and are tasked with reading fetal monitoring strips and guarding against fetal distress, as well as checking the basic O2 saturation, blood pressure, and other variables.  When these factors are not properly checked, it could result in very serious personal injuries to the mother and HIE to the baby.


Next, doctors and physicians would be liable for HIE injuries to babies.  This is probably most obvious to most people, but the hospital and nursing staff really are more likely to cause negligent omissions in the care of a mother and newborn.  But doctors are more likely to cause negligent acts or omissions, meaning that the birthing process itself doctors could use tools improperly (negligent act) or fail to schedule an emergency c-section in time (negligent omission).  The longer that the doctor’s actions cause harm to the mother and baby, the more likely that an injury such as HIE will occur.


Was Your Newborn Diagnosed with HIE?  Let Us Determine Who Caused This Oregon Medical Malpractice


While injuries such as HIE could be caused by natural and unavoidable consequences of child birth, in today’s age of modern medicine that is simply less likely.  It is unfortunately true that a newborn diagnosed with HIE is likely the victim of reckless, careless, or negligent medical care.  Please call our Oregon medical malpractice lawyer at Kuhlman Law, LLC to learn what can be done to protect your rights.  Our law office is located in Bend, Oregon, and we handle cases throughout Oregon including Portland, Eugene, Salem, Gresham, Corvallis, Redmond, Sisters, Hillsboro, Medford and throughout Central Oregon, Deschutes County, and anywhere else in Oregon.  We also have an office in Minnesota.  


To receive a FREE consultation, please call our Oregon medical malpractice lawyer by dialing (541) 385-1999 or use our easy and convenient “contact us” box at the bottom of our website.  If we accept your case, we will conduct a FREE investigation to get you the answers that you deserve regarding your birth injury case.

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