Despite the United States’ traditional position as a world leader in healthcare, “The United States is one of only eight countries that saw a rise in maternal mortality over the last decade”. Of these eight nations, the United States is the only developed western country.
In fact, the United States has “a maternal mortality ratio higher than the rates of fifty-nine other countries.” Between 1990 and 2013, the maternal mortality ratio increased 136% from 12 to 28 maternal deaths in every 100,000 live births. This placed the United States in 60th place on a list of 180 countries. It ranked lower than the United Kingdom, Saudi Arabia, and China, among others.
The United States also trails behind other developed nations in infant mortality rates. Although “the infant mortality rate in the United States declined 12% from 2005 through 2011 to 6.05 infant deaths per 1,000 live births, it is still higher than the rates of other peer nations.” Certain counties in the United States shockingly have an infant mortality rate worse than sub-Saharan countries such as Kenya and Rwanda.
Thankfully, the above mortality rates are not substantially caused by the negligence or malpractice of health care providers—but it does contribute.
Two seminal studies, considered to be the most reliable, were conducted in New York (1984) and Colorado and Utah (1992). The New York study found that about “0.6% of childbearing women and about 0.2% of newborns sustained a negligent injury while receiving care in U.S. hospitals.” The Colorado and Utah study found these numbers to be in the range of 0.8% and 1.8%. More recent studies have reflected these numbers.
Know Your Rights
Gingras, Thomsen & Wachs, LLP specializes in obtaining fair compensation for infants and mothers who have been injured by the negligence or malpractice of health care providers. If you suspect that you, your partner, or your child have been injured by the negligence or malpractice of a health care provider, do not hesitate to consult Gingras, Thomsen & Wachs, LLP today.