Delayed / Improper Resuscitation Attorneys Serving the Black Community

In the U.S., we’re waking up to more of the ways that racial disparities affect the health of the Black community. And there’s one inequality that affects every single Black person born in this country — the wide gap in the field of maternal healthcare.

22 percent of Black women report receiving discrimination in their medical care. This discrimination has real-world consequences — most shockingly in a maternal death rate among Black women that approaches 4 times the rate white mothers die at. This isn’t explained by socioeconomic differences. Black women with a college degree die at a rate that is 5.2 times greater than their white counterparts.

This racial care gap can have life-changing impacts on the vulnerable lives these women are bringing into the world. If you or your child have been injured by medical malpractice, please let us know. We care about Black women and their children, and have the know-how to help.

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What Is Negligent Resuscitation?

When a baby cries after birth, it’s a good sign — it means that they have taken their first breath.

Ten percent of babies are not able to breathe on their own after birth. They will require intervention to help with successful breathing. When this breathing assistance isn’t given in time, life-long consequences may result.

Unfortunately, medical negligence is often at fault in cases of improper and delayed resuscitation. Negligent resuscitation can include:

  • Failing to detect the need for resuscitation shortly after birth
  • A lack of qualified medical professionals attending the birth 
  • A lack of proper equipment
  • Poor detection of risk factors
  • Mistakes made during intubation
  • Improper infant resuscitation techniques

When is Resuscitation Needed?

When a child is born, the biggest risk is their inability to breathe. Perinatal asphyxia — oxygen deprivation before, during or after delivery — can cause brain damage within moments. 

Pre-term infants, particularly those with low birthweights, often require help breathing. The use of forceps and other birth instruments is also correlated with a need for resuscitation. Certain conditions like a prolapsed umbilical cord are risk factors as well.

The Dangers of Resuscitation Errors

Resuscitation measures are undertaken in order to restore adequate oxygen to the baby’s brain as soon as possible. When infants aren’t able to breathe for even a short time, the consequences can be immense, and are often permanent. 

These dangers include:

  • Hypoxic brain injury
  • Cerebral palsy
  • Developmental delays
  • Cognitive impairments
  • Physical and functional deficits
  • Death

How Race Plays a Role in Infant Resuscitation

It’s been shown that there are racial divides in the treatment of infants in need of resuscitation — and again a marked Black/white divide in likelihood of intubation. While intubation is a recommended practice in cases where newborns need resuscitation, it can be deadly. Studies have found that death or neurodevelopmental impairment occurs in 29 percent of infants intubated on the first attempt and 53 percent that required multiple attempts.

More striking is the racial divide in risk factors for needing resuscitation. Pre-term infants often require respiratory support at birth. And research has found a big racial gap here — pre-term infant birth rates for non-Hispanic Black infants registered at 17.2 percent in 2006, compared to 7.4 percent for non-Hispanic white infants.

Studies have found racism is an independent factor increasing Black women’s likelihood of preterm delivery and low birthweight.

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When to Consult with a Lawyer Experienced in Discrimination

Lee Merritt, Esq. is a longtime leader and influential voice in the fight for Social Justice, representing high-profile civil rights cases like that of Jonathan Price, a 31-year-old Black man killed by police while intervening in a domestic dispute.

A dedicated civil rights activist and trial attorney, Mr. Merritt runs a distinguished national practice focusing on victims of police brutality, hate crimes and corporate discrimination. As an activist, he has championed police reform and community empowerment. His office has led the way to reform in Texas, a state notorious for its failure to prosecute police officers, successfully advocating for the first murder indictments of officers in the state in over 40 years.

There are many more battles to fight on behalf of the Black women who suffer from discrimination in medical care. For a free consultation please fill out our form, write [email protected] or call us directly at 1-800-590-4116.

About S. Lee Merritt

Civil Rights Lawyer

Lee Merritt, Esq. is emerging as a leading and influential new voice in the fight for Social Justice. A dedicated civil rights activist and trial attorney, Merritt runs a high profile national practice focusing on victims of police brutality, hate crimes and corporate discrimination. As an activist, he has championed police reform and community empowerment. 

Do you need more information or want to help? 

Our organization can help mothers and their families who have faced medical issues during pregnancy learn about the resources available to them, as well as learn about what action they may be able to take legally due to discriminatory health practices.  Contact us below by email or phone and our team can learn more about your situation and give you free and friendly advice.

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