People receive medical assistance for a wide range of different reasons. Someone who is looking for beauty hacks may consider having cosmetic surgery, while a cancer sufferer may seek a life-saving operation. Alternatively, a mum may go into hospital for the joyous experience of having a baby.
Sadly, things don’t always go well for the patients, and medical malpractice is a serious issue that can result in death or injury. It may be that something like this has recently happened to you or a loved one, and you are needing to prove who was responsible. If that’s the case, this article will provide you with seven key things that could help you.
It happens when doctors, nurses, hospitals, labs, pharmaceutical companies, and other healthcare providers act with recklessness or negligence, resulting in injury to the patient. The medical professional’s duty is to provide competent care, i.e. providing treatment within their knowledge or skills. This includes decisions on tests, diagnoses, treatments, and medications.
If there are mistakes made during this phase, medical malpractice has occurred. The legal process is a long and complicated one because it requires proving that the medical provider was negligent.
If any of the medical equipment that was used during the procedure was faulty or not working properly, this could be an indication of medical malpractice. If the medical staff member was aware that there was something wrong with the equipment and still used it anyway, they could be held accountable for their actions.
There may have been a lack of oxygen flow to the patient because of oxygen tubing issues. There may have been failed monitoring devices, making it difficult to detect the patient’s vital signs (e.g. blood pressure or heart rate). Alternatively, there were surgical complications because some instruments were defective (e.g. scalpels causing internal bleeding). Another area that would need to be investigated is the hospital’s policy and practice in terms of the regular checking and maintenance of the equipment.
The most populous city in the U.S. state of Illinois in Chicago, having 8,877,000 occupants in 2021. Many people seek Chicago personal injury attorneys to help them prove medical malpractice or wrongful death. It’s possible to go online and request free consultations and case evaluations, as well as viewing lawyer accreditations and client reviews.
Medical malpractice may be proven if the incorrect medication was prescribed to the patient. This may be due to the medical records being wrong, an expired prescription, or a simple transcription error.
Medical malpractice can also occur if the right medication was given but in the wrong dosage or form, leading to serious side effects.
In medical malpractice cases, this is often the root cause of the issue. Sometimes this means a doctor has made an incorrect diagnosis. It could be that the healthcare provider wasn’t at their best due to fatigue, stress, or illness. Another example is where a surgeon leaves behind surgical tools inside their patient after surgery has finished.
Humans are not machines, so it’s always possible that medical professionals will do things wrong if they are untrained, unqualified, unconfident, or simply careless. Many medical errors could have been avoided with better patient education. Medical malpractice often occurs because a healthcare provider did not explain to the patient how their condition should be managed following treatment or surgery. This may include the need for a course of antibiotics to prevent infections from occurring.
When medical staff fails to properly wash their hands before treating a patient, they may be guilty of medical malpractice. This includes not washing hands after using the bathroom or touching blood and other bodily fluids.
If the room is visibly dirty, such as having dirt or blood on the equipment and walls, it can be seen as a breach in hygiene too. A person would need to have the organization’s hygiene policy reviewed and assessed, to see if there were human failings in this regard.
They are a top cause of medical malpractice. If they occur, they can often lead to misdiagnoses and mistakes in treatment because no one is on the same page. It may be that the communication between doctors was poor, or there was a language barrier between staff or patients.
The end result could be anything from people being given the wrong medication to being released from the hospital too soon.
Hospitals can be frantic places full of overworked and exhausted staff. When doctors are pushed for time they may rush the operation, potentially leading to medical errors. While it is important that operations move quickly in order to benefit the maximum number of patients’ lives, each patient must have the doctors’ 100% attention.
Whilst medical practitioners are struggling to provide the best possible treatment, they are often battling the surrounding conditions. There may be distracted nurses and noisy staff, as well as patients calling out for help. Added to that there may be a wide array of phones and beeping machines or a fresh intake of urgent cases.
When there are unexpected urgent cases and overcrowded hospitals, mistakes can happen. The building may become full of people, and there may be staff shortages or sickness. A postponement or delay in treatment can be considered to be malpractice if it delays an essential diagnosis or life-saving surgery.
A delayed diagnosis can occur if a doctor doesn’t follow up with the test results. It can also happen if they prescribe minimal medication without completing tests that would reveal a serious case of cancer that required immediate surgery.
Hopefully, these common issues will steer you in the right direction. You’ll then be more certain as to what you need to prove and how. With the help of a personal injury lawyer, there’s a chance you may be able to gain justice and a fair financial settlement as a result.