Charlotte Birthing Center Is Closing
Charlotte birthing center, Baby+Co., has announced that it will close its doors in May. The other two Baby+Co. centers located in Cary and Winston-Salem will close as well. Baby+Co. has been fraught with controversy since four infants died and state investigators found significant problems with the Cary center after a two month investigation. Sometimes infant deaths are due to natural and unavoidable causes, but as Charlotte birth injury attorneys know, sometimes birth injuries and death are caused by negligent medical care.
Baby+Co.’s North Carolina history and services
Baby+Co. has reportedly been in the North Carolina area since 2015 providing what it describes as health guidance and well-woman care through pregnancy, birth, and beyond. The birthing center’s services allow parents to attend prenatal appointments and deliver their babies at the center without visiting a traditional hospital or obstetrician’s office. Since 2015, Baby+Co. claims to have provided care for over 4,000 women and families.
Infant deaths and patient concerns
Concerns with the birthing center began to escalate when four infants died and three of them died within six months of each other at the Cary location. Some former patients shared concerns with state investigators about the care they received at the facilities. One mother described a midwife leaving her room right after delivering her baby and not realizing that her baby was in distress. Another mother described showing up to the center in the middle of the night with only one person, a nurse-midwife, at the center to deliver her baby. The delivery turned into an emergency and the nurse-midwife had to use her one free hand to make a phone call for help because there were no other medical professionals in the building.
After the state agency conducted a two month investigation at the Cary birthing center, it released a report identifying 16 areas of deficiencies. The report detailed troubling findings as far as physician facility supervision, training, and oversight. Ultimately, the birthing center was not subject to any fines or corrective actions because the state health agency has no actual authority over natural birthing centers because they are not currently licensed or regulated in North Carolina. That may change as a bill has been introduced which would require state regulation for birthing centers.
Baby+Co. responded to the report stating that the investigator’s lack of familiarity with birthing centers led to an inaccurate report. They objected to the report’s findings overall and stated that their model of care has a tremendous track record of success. In the birthing center’s closing announcement, Baby+Co. blamed market conditions and North Carolina’s payer landscape for making these centers financially unsustainable.
Birth injury attorneys
Birth injury cases are unique and only experienced attorneys should be trusted with these matters. When medical negligence leads to infants’ serious, debilitating, or fatal injuries, responsible parties should be held accountable. If your child was injured during birth, contact a Charlotte birth injury attorney at Brown Moore & Associates, PLLC to discuss your claim and the injuries your child sustained.