Critics of the legal system often argue that families would be better off by putting tragedies behind them and not seeking to hold wrongdoers accountable for their conduct. The argument goes that while it is regrettable that doctor, nurses, and other medical personnel make mistakes that harm patients, there is little to gain from filing a medical malpractice lawsuit to provide redress for the harm caused. It is best to forget about the incident and move on as best as possible. Of course, this argument misses the critical point that it is impossible for most victims to actually move on. That is because the consequences of these accidents usually last a lifetime. Our Chicago birth injury attorneys are well aware that when it comes to mistakes that affect newborns, the effects dictate the young victim’s life.
The costs of dealing with the consequences of the mistake over the course of a lifetime can be mind-boggling. Specialized therapies and medical care are often needed. Considering that the life expectancy of many of these children is often seventy to eighty years, then the overall costs of the accident reach significant amounts. A story this week at EIN News touched on the long-term effects of these birth injuries. The story noted how it is often only via use of the legal system that families have the resources they need to provide the best possible care to their injured child.
Experienced attorneys in this area can ensure that a wide range of past, present, and future medical needs are provided. For one thing, the costs of the initial hospital stay can added up quickly, depending on the time spent in labor and other more complex hospitalization and treatment issues. The child often has to spend time in a neonatal intensive care unit. At times other medical professionals have to be brought in for a second opinion. These initial costs can be recovered in a birth injury case.
Perhaps even more importantly, the child’s long-term care costs can be recovered. Depending on the injury, the child may need to have in-home nursing care around the clock. Pediatric and vocational rehabilitation are frequently necessary. Many children who suffer birth injuries also need physical and speech therapy. At the home, families are well-served when they can have personal access to medical equipment. Special schooling is frequently appropriate to help these children reach their maximum potential. All of these potential needs are factored into jury awards in verdicts and in discussions with involved parties when working to reach a settlement before trial.
The Illinois birth injury lawyers have years of experienced helping families in this situation. For example, we helped one family receive a $6.71 million verdict following a damaging birthing mistake. In that case, an inexperienced hospital resident performed a vaginal delivery on a child even though the baby was in breech position. Shoulder dystocia and a particularly severe brachial plexus arm injury resulted. The family was able to use the award to ensure that their child will receive all of the special care that he needs for the rest of his life.
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