In recent years, water births have become increasingly popular with expecting mothers who desire a more natural approach to child labor and delivery. During labor, the mother enters a pool or tub filled with warm water. The water helps the mother relax, reduces pain and injury, and potentially improves blood flow. When delivery begins, many mothers remain in the water until the baby is born. Research thus far has not found any benefits to delivering the baby while in the water.
In fact, water births carry potential risks that many doctors feel outweigh any benefits provided by the process. If there is a complication with the pregnancy, it is difficult to move the mother from the pool to an operating room.
When birth complications result in injuries to the mother or child, the hospital, doctors, nurses, and medical staff may be liable. If the hospital or staff deviated from the standard of care that would have been used by a similarly situated medical professional from the same field, medical malpractice may have occurred. Medical malpractice lawsuits can be incredibly expensive for doctors and hospitals, with verdicts and settlements reaching millions of dollars. As such, many hospitals actively seek to reduce the potential for errors as much as possible.
At the DeKalb Medical Center, the hospital talking about banning water births in 2016 due to the potential risk of pregnancy complications. This angered many expecting mothers who had planned to have their water births at the facility. While some mothers have a water birth with a midwife or physician in the comfort of their own home, hospitals have begun permitting water births at their facilities to make sure the process is performed in a sterile and safe way. In addition, by having a water birth at a hospital, physicians and nurses will be present and ready to address complications as fast as possible.
Due to DeKalb Medical Center’s proposed ban, mothers gathered together and organized a protest. In response, DeKalb agreed to revisit the issue, stating that the doctors would vote on whether to lift the ban. After the vote, the hospital reevaluated whether to reinstate water births. To date, DeKalb does allow water birth.
If you or a loved one was injured during childbirth, please call the experienced Atlanta personal injury attorneys at Grant Law Office today at (866) 249-5513 to schedule a free consultation.