Patients place their lives in the hands of doctors all the time. It’s how the healthcare system works. However, it’s not an all rosy affair because some patients come out broken with their lives changed forever. What do you do in such a situation?

Not every doctor is careless, but some are overly confident that they make fatal medical errors in diagnosing your ailment or issuing prescriptions. 

Doctors should know what they are doing. After all, they have spent over a decade training and perfecting their skills. Doctors don’t know everything, but still, they have a professional responsibility to give their patients the best care and measurement possible. 

How concerned should you be about medical errors?

Medical mistakes are nightmares that change a person’s life. Maybe the doctor left an instrument in your body, operating on the wrong limb or bad drug reactions.

According to the 2016 study on medical errors by John Hopkins University, medical mistakes rank third in the cause of death in the US after cancer and heart disease. The data is an analysis for over eight years,

According to the same medical report, at least 250,000 patients die annually due to preventable medical mistakes, and millions more suffer drug-related errors. This is a serious issue.

Taking legal action requires filing a lawsuit against the medical facility. Law firms like BLG-DC assist patients to get justice and hold health professionals responsible. You can contact them for further advice.

What are the common medical errors?

While errors like performing surgery on the wrong limb or forgetting a medical instrument in the body make headlines, they rarely occur. Below are the most common medical errors.

1. Falls

Approximately a million hospitalized patients fall annually. A third of these cases are preventable if the staff factored in risks of certain medications such as causing dizziness, making it difficult to walk. 

2. Abuse of antibiotics

According to the CDC, there are about 50% wrong or unnecessary antibiotics prescriptions resulting in drug addiction or severe reactions. Go ahead and consult your doctor about the antibiotics they are prescribing and take them as directed. 

3. Compliance errors

The doctor didn’t follow proper procedures when dispensing or prescribing medications. The error may have caused renal or liver failure because they didn’t account for your allergy.

4. Drug errors

At least 1000 preventable medication mistakes are occurring in hospitals daily, like getting an incorrect dose. It often damages vital organs like the kidney, liver or causes paralysis among other complications.

As a patient, know the exact dose and name of drugs you get, why, and how to take the drugs. 

Keep a record of all your medications, supplements, and vitamins you take to avoid harmful drug interactions. 

5. Administration errors

It occurs when medical personnel give drugs to the wrong patient causing adverse reactions and health complications. Poor dose preparation or the use of unauthorized drugs leading to serious medical complications are grounds for lawsuits.

6. Too much bed rest

The body should move when you can; otherwise, you risk falls. Prolonged bed rest weakens the body making walking difficult.

7. Rushed discharge

It’s the responsibility of the doctor to ensure the body is ready before discharging the patient. Hospitals often give clear discharge instructions to reduce readmission rates. 

Discharging a patient earlier without issuing clear directions can result in secondary infections or health complications. 

Know how to take care of your surgical wounds or medical condition. Check if the instructions are clear before heading home. 

What can patients do to address the medical errors?

By law, you can correct medical errors in the medical records. HIPAA or Health Insurance Portability and Accountability keep your medical records private, and patients can request an amendment to their records if there are errors. 

Sometimes you can’t make corrections and only have to file a lawsuit for damages. What do you need?

Review your medical records

Most patients don’t look at their medical records, but they should. Healthcare systems give you a patient portal allowing you to access all your medical records. Get copies and review them for inaccuracies such as diagnosis, symptoms, and treatment.

The records may mention a testicular tumor instead of a temporal tumor, which are two different things. 

Hire an attorney

Hire a medical malpractice attorney and give them your medical records and other evidence of negligence. The attorney files a lawsuit against the medical facility on your behalf and ensures the hospital takes professional responsibility for the errors.  

The attorney gathers professional testimonies to aid your lawsuit and pushes for fair compensation or settlement to cover your pains and suffering. Consult your attorney and build your case to receive justice for the medical errors. 

Final thoughts

Hire a reputable attorney from a competent law firm to handle your medical malpractice lawsuit. A good attorney fights for the client and gets your justice. Feel free to call us for inquiries.