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Who can be held liable for birth injuries?

Medical doctors, anesthesiologists, nurses, health care facilities such as hospitals, pharmaceutical companies and other providers of health care can all be held financially responsible for medical malpractice. Parents in Tennessee whose child suffered birth injuries may have grounds to file a claim against the negligent party. While doctors are typically the first to be named as defendants, hospitals can also be held liable -- either directly or vicariously.

If the negligence of a member of the medical staff of a hospital causes a birth injury, the facility can be held liable for negligent supervision or retention for failing to make reasonable inquiries into the training, education and licensing of the individual. A hospital must always have sufficient numbers of registered nurses on duty, and it can also be held responsible if employees fail to follow a private attending physician's orders. Failure to keep accurate records and neglecting to perform the necessary clinical tests are some of the other potential liability claims.

A hospital can be vicariously liable if any of its staff members cause injury to a patient. If a private physician's negligence causes harm to a hospital patient, the hospital could be liable for granting an incompetent or unlicensed doctor the privilege to practice there. When a patient suffers injury caused by prescribed drugs, the manufacturer of the medication might be held responsible. However, the pharmaceutical manufacturer's duty is typically to the physician in having to warn the doctor of potential dangers.

Medical malpractice is a complicated field of the law, and cases that involve birth injuries in Tennessee are typically left in the hands of an experienced attorney. A lawyer can assess the circumstances and determine all parties to name as defendants. An attorney will have easier access to evidence such as hospital records and reports, which will be essential for building a strong case in pursuit of a monetary judgment to recover financial and emotional damages.

Source: FindLaw, "Responsible Parties in Birth Injury Cases: Who Can Be Sued?", Accessed on May 25, 2018

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