From the time that we are small children, we are taught that physicians are voices of authority and knowledge who are to be trusted and relied upon. Perhaps that is why our society holds doctors and other healthcare professionals to such high standards and seeks such exacting justice when they fall short in the professional service that they provide.
Generally speaking, if we have an established doctor/patient relationship with a physician, they have a duty to provide us with a certain level of responsible, attentive, knowledgeable care. This does not mean that they are expected to be infallible or that they are not permitted to make mistakes, but rather that they are to be held accountable when it is proven that they acted negligently.
There are many forms that medical malpractice can take, but these are the ones that most commonly lead to patients or their survivors filing personal injury lawsuits:
- Medication Errors – This occurs when a physician prescribes a medication that causes a patient harm. In most cases, medication errors are considered negligent when a physician writes for a medication that is inappropriate for the patient’s condition; when they write a prescription for an incorrect and harmful dosage; and when they write a prescription that is either contraindicated in combination with another drug the patient is taking or for their condition or sensitivity.
- Misdiagnosis or Delayed Diagnosis – If a patient goes to a physician for a diagnosis and is told that they are healthy when they are actually ill; diagnosed with the wrong illness; or in some other way misdiagnosed in a way that affects the patient’s health negatively.
- Surgical Errors – Where a surgeon operates on the wrong body part; leaves instruments or tools inside the patient; is imprecise or sloppy or unhygienic during the course of surgery, leading to patient injury or death.
- Anesthesia Error – Too much anesthesia can lead to death or brain damage, and too little can lead to patients suffering trauma and severe pain.
- Errors In Prenatal Care or Childbirth – When a physician fails to recognize prenatal anomalies or needs or is inattentive or negligent during the birth process and the result is either a death, a birth injury or some other harm to the child.
If you or someone you love has suffered an injury or harm at the hands of a physician and you believe that it involved negligence, we can help. Contact us today to learn about your rights.