Whether you were born in a state and have lived there all your life, or you end up a resident by circumstance, you’re at the mercy of their healthcare system when it comes to basic medical care. What state you are in when you receive that care could affect how much additional risk you face.
The Atlanta Journal Constitution recently reported that Georgia ranked 47th overall when it comes to some of the most important child-birth related topics.
Where is Georgia falling short in the national childbirth game?
WalletHub compared criteria of all states and the District of Columbia on cost, health care, baby friendliness and family friendliness. No state came close to the top score of 100, but Georgia only scored a 30.17. The state fell well below average in the remaining categories:
- Parental-leave policy: 34th
- Childcare centers per capita: 38th
- Baby friendliness: 42nd
- Family friendliness: 42nd
- Pediatricians and family doctors per capita: 44th
- Infant mortality rate: 45th
- Health care: 47th Low birth weight: 48th
The role of health insurance in childbirth and beyond
Having health insurance is necessary when you’re pregnant. While birth injuries can happen anywhere, the insurance you have can limit your options when choosing a doctor, hospital, or birth center. According to Atlanta Birth Center, the facility costs alone for childbirth in the Atlanta area can reach into the tens of thousands for:
- Cesarean with complications: $20,080
- Cesarean without complications: $14,900
- Natural birth with complications: $11,410
- Natural birth without complications: $8,920
- Birth center birth: $2,277
More bad news is that Georgia also ranks third worst in the nation for healthcare coverage. The state had 1.4 million people without insurance in 2018. If you or your child happen to end up one of the unlucky victims who experience a childbirth injury and you’re uninsured, that financial strain can quickly become too much to handle without receiving help.
What are the most common birth injuries?
Although childbirth is a common process, there are a lot of variables requiring quick decisions and a change in procedure to protect both mother and baby. An oversized baby or the size and shape of the mother’s pelvis are red flags that switching to a cesarean delivery may be a safer approach. Using certain devices, like a vacuum or forceps, to deliver the baby can cause trauma. There are a number of situations that cause birth injuries when not handled with the proper skill and care.
Some of the injuries seen most in newborns include:
- Swelling or bruising of the head
- Cranial bleeding
- Breakage of small blood vessels in a baby’s eyes
- Pressure on the baby’s face causing nerve injury
- Nerve damage to the arms and hands
- Fracture of the clavicle or collarbone
These injuries can lead to a lifetime of expensive medical needs if they cause conditions such as Cerebral Palsy (CP), Erb’s Palsy, or brain damage. The baseline cost to care for a child with CP over his or her lifetime is upwards of $1 million. If that child has any other complications such as hearing or vision loss, you can expect that number to increase by at least $400,000. That’s a tough hurdle to overcome for the average family.
The Atlanta birth injury lawyers at Harris Lowry Manton LLP understand how heart wrenching it is to see your child suffer any injury, much less one that was negligently inflicted. You should be able to trust medical professionals to provide the quality healthcare that you and your baby are entitled to.
When you realize that preventable mistakes were made that have indelibly harmed you and your family, our seasoned attorneys will carefully guide you through the legal process of seeking a fair settlement from those at fault. Schedule your free case evaluation by calling our Atlanta office at 404-998-8847, our Savannah office at 912-417-3774, or we invite you to reach out to us through our contact page to tell us your story.
Steve Lowry is an award-winning litigator who has secured record-setting jury verdicts on behalf of his clients. A passionate advocate for individuals who have been harmed by the actions of others, Steve has won numerous top 10 verdicts in Georgia.
Read more about Stephen G. Lowry here.