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Medical Malpractice Attorney in Michigan and Doulas

Legally Reviewed and Edited by: Terry Cochran

The idea of a Doula for the comfort of childbirth has evolved since early Greece. The term “Doula” refers to the Greek word meaning handmaiden or servant and has never had the connotation of a professional.

Malpractice lawyers have to keep this in mind when there is malpractice claim as a result of a problem with childbirth, and they should not confuse the term with the professional roles of midwife, doctor, and nurse.

Although they are not medical professionals, Doulas can be held liable for medical malpractice cases if there is a birth injury claim of negligence by the mother.

It is necessary to fully understand the role of a Doula to gain a perspective on how the Doula might be in the wrong for medical negligence.

Most Doulas are women for the simple reason that most women giving birth are more comfortable with a female by their side for comfort.

The Evolution of the Role of a Doula

The term “Doula” was first coined in the 1960s when women were asking for additional support during childbirth, and they sought this support from their friends.

Unlike previous eras, many women in the ’60s were no longer close to their families. Women began looking to others to fill the role a mother or family member might have filled previously.
In the 1980s the role expanded even more. Birth Doulas, sometimes called Labor Doulas, began to differentiate their responsibilities by educating mothers on labor positions, breathing techniques, and medical and non-medical options during birth.

The basic role of providing a comforting and emotional presence has not changed. However, many people ask for assistance with postpartum assistance, such as help with the newborn and instruction and support with breastfeeding. Many insurance companies do not provide payment for Doula’s outright, every individual company has different policies.

Certification for Doula Training and Certification

There are no federal or state requirements to be a Doula, and as a result, this is not a profession. Instead, there are groups offering training for Doulas, and they also provide certification. The leading two organizations for this purpose are DONA International (Doulas of North America), and CAPPA (Childbirth and Postpartum Professional Association).

Both of these organizations provide training for labor doulas, postpartum doulas, lactation educators, and childbirth educators. The training usually involves at least three days on classroom participation, the completion of a reading list, and attendance at childbirth under the supervision of a midwife.

Doula Malpractice

Instances of Malpractice

The primary role of a Doula is to provide comfort and support to the mother who is giving birth. When the Doula is negligent in providing this service, the mother can bring malpractice charges against her. There can also be malpractice charges filed when the Doula exceeds the limits of her role and possibly assumes those of a midwife or nurse. The mother must prove that the Doula promised a certain level of care and breached that contract by not fulfilling her commitment.

Injuries that may occur due to Doula negligence include:

  • Making medical decisions for the patient that result in harm,wrongful death
  • Failing to contact a healthcare professional when there is a problem
  • Offering dangerous holistic medicines
  • Breach of medical records
  • Dropping an infant when handing the baby to the mother
  • Interfering with doctors or medical professional providers when they are administering care.

There are other instances where the mother or baby can be considered a victim of medical malpractice.

You can’t turn back the clock and prevent a medical error, but at Cochran, Kroll & Associates, P.C. we can help you protect your rights and the rights of your child after an injury.

If you have any concerns or questions, a Michigan medical malpractice lawyer at Cochran, Kroll & Associates, P.C. should be contacted to investigate and determine if there is malpractice occurred.

A medical malpractice attorney at our law firm can provide legal advice and help you get the compensation you need for lost wages, future medical bills and pain and suffering.

Final Word

The role of a Doula has evolved into a more important one in modern childbirth. This has happened mainly because of the need for strong emotional support for the mother by other women who may fill in the traditional family element.

The law firm of Cochran, Kroll & Associates, P.C. in Michigan can help to identify and investigate any possible liability associated with Doulas. Call our law firm today for a free consultation and informational purposes only at 866-MICH-LAW in Grand Rapids to begin your attorney client relationship.

Our law firm works on a contingency basis and we never charge a fee unless we win your case.

Disclaimer : The information provided is general and not for legal advice. The blogs are not intended to provide legal counsel and no attorney-client relationship is created nor intended.

Tristan is a professional writer and had careers as a teacher of English, school administrator, and as a broker in real estate sales. He has gained a great deal of legal experience through his service as the president of a teacher's union, a member of the board for a real estate association, and as the chairman of the Government Affairs Committee for the real estate board of directors. Before beginning a full-time job as a freelance writer, he was the Executive Director of the Global Business Alliance for a local Chamber of Commerce and sat on the Government Affairs Committee for the Chamber.



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