We all expect a high level of care from healthcare practitioners. And we should. After all, medical professionals must meet lengthy educational and internship requirements, are held to a high standard of care, and have stringent protocols they must follow to ensure patient safety. But even good doctors make mistakes, and when they do, patients can file a claim with the doctor’s medical malpractice insurer to recover damages. And a medical malpractice attorney in Fort Lauderdale from Montero Law can help patients recover the compensation they need to cover any expenses or losses.
Medical Errors: Incidence & Contributing Factors
An article published in the September 2013 issue of Journal of Patient Safety revealed some startling numbers about medical mistakes in America. The researchers reviewed four previous studies on patient harm and medical errors. The author found that “the true number of premature deaths associated with preventable harm to patients was estimated at more than 400,000 per year. Serious harm seems to be 10- to 20-fold more common than lethal harm.”
With the high standards and requirements of care in the U.S., how is that so many people are harmed in the care of medical professionals? There are numerous factors that help create an environment where errors can take place.
- Increased production demands
- Limited support staff and a shortage of physicians
- Poor workplace practices
- Staffing limitations
- Physician fatigue and burnout
- Lack of appropriate training
- Lack of transparency and limited accountability for errors that harm patients
Examples of Medical Malpractice
Not all mistakes mean that you have a valid medical malpractice case lawsuit worth pursuing. In order for it to be considered malpractice, the physician must have violated the standard of care, meaning she must have made a mistake that other doctors in similar situations would not have made.
For example, let’s say you went to the hospital with chest pain. The doctors assessed you in a timely manner, thoroughly reviewed your medical history, gave you the proper diagnostic tests, and determined that your pain was related to anxiety. They send you home, but you wind up having a heart attack the next day. If other reasonable professionals would have taken the same action, then you may not be able to sue for malpractice.
However, if the physician didn’t follow protocol or failed to act in a way that’s in alignment with the industry standard of care, it may malpractice. Below are some examples of situations that might merit a medical malpractice suit.
- Misdiagnosis or delayed diagnosis
- Surgical errors, e.g., wrong site surgery, wrong patient, wrong side, leaving medical instruments inside the patient
- Failure to monitor condition
- Wrong medication, wrong dosage, prescribing contraindicated medicines
- Using outdated or wrong methods or diagnostic tools
- Not warning patients about the risks of treatments (failure to obtain informed consent)
Free Consult with Montero Law in Fort Lauderdale
If you or your loved one suffered harm because of a physician, hospital, or clinic’s negligence, one of your first priorities will be to speak to a medical malpractice lawyer to review your case. Your attorney will be able to determine if you have a valid case, and then help you pursue the compensation you are due.
You may be able to recover damages that include the following.
- Current and future medical bills
- Loss of wages
- Pain and suffering
- Emotional damages
For a free consult with a medical malpractice attorney in Fort Lauderdale, call Montero Law. We will take the time to evaluate your situation and provide you with clear-cut answers to your questions. Our background, resources, and legal strategies enable us to help clients get the compensation they need. Call us today at 954-767-6500 or contact us online and schedule a consultation at your convenience.