Doctors in Pennsylvania and across the United States aren’t doing enough to protect mothers during childbirth, according to a new study. In fact, researchers found that the U.S. is the most dangerous developed country for expecting mothers. Furthermore, the nation’s maternal death and injury rates are getting worse.
The investigation found that over 50,000 women suffer serious childbirth-related injuries each year. Of those, around 700 die. Worse, at least 50 percent of the injuries and deaths were attributed to inadequate medical care, meaning that they could have been prevented. As a result, the U.S. had a maternal death and injury rate of 26.5 per 100,000 births in 2015, which is the worst rate in the developed world. In comparison, the maternal death and injury rates in countries like France, Germany and Japan have been improving.
According to the researchers, hypertension and hemorrhaging were the top two complications suffered by women giving birth. The investigation determined that 60 percent of hypertension deaths and 90 percent of hemorrhaging deaths could have been prevented if medical staff had intervened earlier. It also noted that California is the only state with a declining maternal death rate. The decline was attributed to the state’s implementation of safety practices specifically designed to prevent maternal injuries and deaths.
A mother who suffers catastrophic childbirth injuries has the right to file a medical malpractice lawsuit seeking compensation for damages. By filing such a suit, the injured victim could be awarded a settlement that covers medical expenses, pain and suffering, lost wages and more. An attorney could help the victim throughout the legal process.