A study by Johns Hopkins found that medical errors are the third leading cause of death in the United States, surpassed in number only by cancer and heart disease. We put our trust and faith in the medical community when we are sick or injured or otherwise seeking medical treatment. We trust that they will apply the standards of care that are present for every procedure, every surgery, and every interaction that they have with us. However, medical malpractice still occurs, and the results can be quite devastating, sometimes leading to lifelong injuries or even death.
Our Miramar medical malpractice team has helped many clients receive the just compensation to which they are entitled when the doctors, nurses, pharmacists and other medical professionals act negligently or recklessly and cause them harm. Following a medical error or incidence of malpractice, it is important to seek counsel right away to preserve your right to collect damages for your injury.
Defining Medical Malpractice
When a healthcare professional provides treatment to a patient that doesn’t reflect the accepted standard of care in medicine, he puts the patient at risk of harm. In a nutshell, if a medical practitioner does not act as other practitioners with similar training would act, and an injury or even a fatality occurs, then he can be held accountable for the outcome via a medical malpractice claim.
For instance, a patient goes to the ER complaining of chest pain and is examined by a doctor who determines that the person is suffering from a bout of indigestion and releases the patient to go home without performing the standard diagnostic tests to rule out myocardial infarction. The patient has a heart attack in the parking lot on the way to his car. This doctor may be found to be negligent by failing to act in a fashion that most doctors would have acted. He was medically negligent due to the omission of diagnostic testing.
Common Medical Errors
Unfortunately, there are a myriad of ways that patients can be harmed at the hands of those they entrust with their very lives. Medical errors kill around one-quarter of a million people each year. Among the most common medical errors are:
- Delayed. When a doctor misses the true diagnosis of the patient’s condition, it delays the treatment of the actual problem, often with a very bad outcome.
- Diagnosing a disease in error can lead to treatment that is not only unnecessary, but also harmful.
- Medication errors. From prescribing a medication that interacts with another the patient is taking to dosing errors, medication can be quite harmful when it is not needed or the patient is allergic.
- Faulty medical devices. Hernia mesh, IVC blood clot filters, surgical warming blankets, hip implants, and other medical devices found to cause harm to the patient are often the focus of a medical malpractice claim.
- Post-op negligence. Doctors must monitor patients after surgery to watch for complications; failing to do so may lead to malpractice claims when the patient develops internal bleeding, sepsis, tissue death or even organ perforation.
If you believe that a medical error or negligence on the behalf of a healthcare provider caused you harm, contact our Miramar medical practice team now. The attorneys at the Law Office of Bradley S. Hartman, PA, offer no-cost confidential case reviews. Schedule yours now.