Post-delivery nursing errors possible even after normal births

Being pregnant with your first child can be an overwhelming experience. Mothers-to-be and their partners often have anxiety about the impending birth, which can be a bit intimidating even in the most highly-rated Texas hospital. Following a normal vaginal birth, there are many precautions that doctors, nurses and other staff must take in order to ensure that a healthy birth translates into a healthy mother and baby.

If medical professionals fail to adhere to standards of patient care after birth, doctor ornursing negligence can harm a patient. For example, after a normal vaginal birth it is typical for the umbilical cord to be cut only after the cord's pulsing stops following delivery. This continued pulsing right after birth means the baby is still being supplied with oxygen via the cord. In addition, after a baby has emerged and the mother has held it for a few moments, it usually needs to be kept from getting too cold and also examined briefly by a doctor or nurse.

Often, part of this examination is giving the baby what are known as Apgar scores, which measure the newborn's responsiveness. After birth many newborns also need a shot of vitamin K as well as antibiotics or antiseptics needed to prevent infection of the infant's eyes. Finally, before members of the newly-enlarged family leave the delivery room, they are often given identifying labels such as bracelets. While it might seem obvious to some, serious nursing errors can result if a baby is not properly identified or matched with the right parents.

Today's healthcare environment is rapidly-changing, and it's not uncommon to hear of - or encounter - overworked nurses in hospitals. Particularly in the delivery room, nursing errors even after birth can result in serious harm to a newborn or mother. It's crucial that both nurses and doctors adhere accurately to their fields' standards of patient care.

Source: Healthychildren.org, "Delivery room procedures following a normal vaginal birth," May 14, 2015

Categories: Nursing Negligence