The High Cost of Treating Birth Injuries
Most parents are not prepared for the ongoing, lifelong financial costs of medical malpractice birth injuries. According to the Centers for Disease Control, hospitalization for birth disabilities alone costs the U.S. over $2.6 billion annually. This is in addition to the costs of diagnostic testing, physical therapy, special schooling, caregiver support, and treatments needed for their children. For example, a study published by The National Center for Biotechnology Information studied the ongoing costs for children with cerebral palsy. Cerebral palsy is the most common type of birth injury diagnosed, with about 4 out of every 1000 babies born suffering from the condition. Cerebral palsy can be the result of a doctor’s mistake or abnormal development during or after pregnancy. It can be caused by infection, fetal or pediatric stroke, undiagnosed maternal health problems, premature birth, and asphyxia, allowing brain damage to occur before, during, or after childbirth.
“Children with cerebral palsy (CP) and co-occurring ID incurred costs that were $41,664 higher” than children without cerebral palsy. Considering how common it is for intellectual disability to occur with cerebral palsy, this number represents a significant number of kids with the disability. On average, costs for “children with both cerebral palsy and intellectual disability were 26 times higher than for children without CP or intellectual disability.”