You should be able to trust your doctor, medical providers, and medical facilities to take care of you. When there is a poor outcome, that does not necessarily mean the medical provider or medical facility committed medical malpractice. Unfortunately, doctors are unable to control everything; however, if a doctor or facility is negligent or breaches the duty of care to the patient, that patient has the right to file a medical malpractice lawsuit.
The signs of medical malpractice are subtle, and evidence of such mistakes is usually found in the smallest details. For instance, the time that elapses between a patient’s symptom and a nurse’s response could indicate malpractice—or the volume of medication given to you by the hospital’s pharmacist. That’s why hospital administration experts and practicing physicians are called upon to testify in many of these cases. You are simply not trained to recognize the signs of malpractice.
However, you may be able to recognize the possibility of medical malpractice if you read below.
What Is Medical Malpractice?
Medical malpractice is "when a physician fails to properly treat a medical condition and the negligent act or omission is the cause of a new or aggravated injury to the patient." Medical malpractice occurs in a variety of ways.
Medical malpractice case types include:
If a physician makes a mistake during surgery, you may have a medical malpractice claim. However, doctors are not the only source of surgical errors. The hospital and other staff members can make mistakes before, during, and after surgery. When you are injured by a mistake or negligence, you need to hold the party who caused your injury accountable for his or her actions. For example, if the surgeon mistaken operates on the wrong arm or the hospital staff fails to provide the proper care in post-op, you should contact our office immediately.
Misdiagnosis or the failure to diagnose is a common form of medical malpractice. When a medical provider fails to diagnose your condition properly, you can suffer severe injuries and permanent damage. Some doctors fail to diagnose conditions because they dismiss the patient's complaints while others simply do not administer the necessary tests to determine what is making their patient ill.
Prescribing the wrong medication can have serious and life-threatening complications. Likewise, prescribing medication when it is not needed can also have the same results. Doctors are not the only parties who can be guilty of medical malpractice regarding medications. The pharmacy staff may give you the wrong medication or print incorrect dosage information. Hospital staff may give you the wrong medication or dose even though your physician made careful notes with regard to your medication.
Failure to Respond
Doctors and nurses are trained to recognize the symptoms of conditions that require immediate action. For example, the symptoms of a stroke or heart attack must be dealt with within minutes, or else the patient may suffer severe and permanent damage. The omission of action is as dangerous and negligent as taking the wrong action.
Perinatal or Postnatal Birth Injuries
Birth injuries are one of the most tragic forms of medical malpractice. Conditions such as cerebral palsy, severe brain damage, paralysis, and life-altering injuries can result from only a few minutes of failing to act. Hospitals, nurses, doctors, and midwives may all be potential defendants in a medical malpractice lawsuit if they fail to provide adequate care to the mother and the child.
Do You Need a Pennsylvania Medical Malpractice Attorney?
Medical malpractice claims can be some of the most complex case in Pennsylvania personal injury law. In order to handle a medical malpractice claim, you need an attorney with substantial knowledge of Pennsylvania's medical malpractice laws and the resources and experts necessary to investigate and prove the medical provider breached the duty of care.
Handler Henning & Rosenberg have been investigating and winning medical malpractice cases for decades—we have the resources, the patients, the time, and the skill to hold hospitals and medical providers accountable for their mistakes.
One of the most important side-effects of medical malpractice lawsuits is the creation of new policies and practices to prevent further litigation. In other words, you may have a chance to prevent what happened to you from happening to another person. That alone is worth fighting for.
Call (888) 498-3023 or contact us with a simple form to speak with our team. We look forward to answering your questions and laying out your options.