What to Do If You Suspect Medical Negligence or Malpractice

Doctors, nurses, and other healthcare providers are typically highly educated and eager to do their best in serving the needs of their patients. Even so, medical negligence and malpractice persist. No matter how much you trust your healthcare providers, it’s wise to anticipate the possibility of negligence and malpractice.

But what should you do if you suspect some form of wrongdoing?

Your Options

If you’ve been the victim of medical malpractice, a personal injury attorney can help you get compensation, like johnpricelawfirm.com. Your lawyer will work with you directly, gathering information to better understand the case, directing you on how to compile evidence, and giving you advice on how to move forward. Depending on the circumstances, they may recommend filing a lawsuit to seek compensation for any damages you’ve faced, including unfairly high medical bills, additional medical bills that could have been avoided, lost wages, and expenses related to premature death.

Only a legal professional will be able to appropriately guide you in this situation, so get a consultation as soon as possible.

What Is Medical Malpractice, Exactly?

According to the ABPLA’s definition, an instance of medical malpractice happens whenever a “hospital, doctor or other health care professional, through a negligent act or omission, causes an injury to a patient. The negligence might be the result of errors in diagnosis, treatment, aftercare or health management.”

This could include things like:

·       Misdiagnosis. Sometimes, malpractice takes the form of misdiagnosis. If a doctor or other healthcare professional has all the information necessary to accurately diagnose your ailment, but they diagnose you with something different, they could be held liable.

·       Overlooked diagnosis. An overlooked diagnosis is also considered negligent in some cases. If the doctor gives you a clean bill of health, despite a lurking illness, they could be held responsible for damages that result from that overlooked diagnosis.

·       Unnecessary surgery. Surgery is risky and expensive, so it should be treated as an option of last resort. Unnecessary surgery is a form of medical malpractice in many cases.

·       Surgical mistakes. Some surgical mistakes can also be considered medical malpractice. These include things like operating on the wrong area, leaving behind tools, or allowing an infection to spread.

·       Errors regarding lab results. Laboratory results can also be mishandled or misjudged. Ignoring lab results or misreading lab results can have catastrophic consequences.

·       Inaccurate medications or dosages. Similarly, healthcare providers can be held liable for medical malpractice if they provide inaccurate medications or dosages.

What to Do If You Suspect Medical Negligence or Malpractice

What should you do if you suspect medical negligence or malpractice?

·       Don’t contact your medical provider. Many people are immediately tempted to contact their medical provider, hoping to get clarification or further treatment. However, this is usually a mistake, as it gives the defendant advanced notice as to what’s happening. Avoid giving your medical provider any clues about your concerns.

·       Don’t disclose the information publicly. Similarly, it’s important to avoid disclosing the information publicly. Don’t post about your injuries or the medical malpractice on social media and only talk about it with people you absolutely, fully trust not to share any details with others. You don’t want to feed information to the defense unnecessarily.

·       Talk to a lawyer ASAP. As early as possible, talk to a personal injury lawyer to discuss your options. The initial consultation with a personal injury lawyer is typically free, so there’s no risk in having this conversation. If the lawyer feels you don’t have a medical malpractice case on your hands, they’ll tell you. But if the lawyer feels you have been the victim of medical malpractice, they’ll provide you with counsel on how to move forward and get the best possible results.

·       Gather evidence. Your lawyer can advise you on this, but it’s usually a good idea to gather evidence independently. Keep all your medical records, thoroughly document all your symptoms, past and present, and take photos and videos of any visible injuries.

·       Get a second opinion. If you suspect you haven’t gotten the proper care you need, it’s worthwhile to get a second opinion. To do this, you’ll need to work with another set of healthcare providers, preferably at another institution. Your second opinion team can help you better understand whether you were treated negligently – and provide you with the adequate care you need to feel better. Follow the advice of your lawyer here, and be sure to keep records of your visits.

Nobody should have to suffer from the consequences of medical malpractice. But unfortunately, even doctors aren’t perfect. Accordingly, it’s your responsibility to be observant and conscientious about your own medical care, so you can take legal action if and when it’s appropriate to do so.