This study analyzed perinatal medical malpractice court cases in Japan between 1999 and 2021, especially those where midwives were found negligent in cases involving the use of labor-inducing medication. The aim was to identify the turning points where adverse events could have been avoided and examine the necessary measures to prevent missing these turning points.
Two cases of successful plaintiff’s verdicts where the midwife’s fault was recognized during the use of labor-inducing medication were found.
Case 1: LEX/BD Document No. 28060137, Fukuoka District Court, July 29, 1999.
Case 2: LEX/BD Document No. 28091003, Kobe District Court, September 30, 2003.
In both cases, the turning points where the adverse events could have been avoided were related to the midwife’s failure to properly evaluate the situation and make critical judgments, such as deciding whether to increase the dose of labor-inducing medication, fitting an electronic fetal heart rate monitoring device and interpreting the results, and observing the delivery progress. To prevent medical errors, midwives must engage in ongoing education and training, practice effective communication and collaboration with healthcare providers, refer to guidelines to minimize the risk of medical errors, and accurately record patient information. The findings are deemed useful for modern medicine as they highlight the importance of midwives’ responsibilities in preventing medical errors during labor and delivery.
Yumiko Yamazaki, Kawasaki City College of Nursing, Japan
About the Presenter(s)
Professor YUMIKO YAMAZAKI is a University Professor/Principal Lecturer at Kawasaki City College of Nursing in Japan
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