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Common Errors by Healthcare Professionals That Provide Grounds for Medical Malpractice Lawsuits

A gavel and a stethoscope placed on a brown table

With over 36 million Americans getting admitted to a hospital every year, it’s no secret that we place a lot of trust in healthcare practitioners. And although all hospitals are required to follow CDC compliant guidelines to keep patients safe, quite a few fall short of these standards.

With medical errors being ranked the third leading cause of death in the United States, being aware of your legal right to fair compensation is critical. Although a broad term, medical malpractice can be claimed for negligence in several incidents. Let’s take a look at what qualifies:



POV image with a doctor’s stethoscope pointing at the viewer

A diagnosis from your doctor is imperative to start a targeted treatment that will suit your body’s needs. But what do you do when you have been misdiagnosed? A misdiagnosis can start a downward spiral that could significantly affect your health. A false or late diagnosis could result in wasted time that could have been otherwise dedicated to properly treating a patient’s health condition. The doctor could also prescribe drugs that are not suitable for the patient’s needs, worsening their condition.

Unfortunately, 1 in 20 adults are at risk of being misdiagnosed by their doctor. To prove that the health practitioner was negligent, it’s best to hire a personal injury lawyer who can help you prepare documentation that serves as evidence. As long as you can prove that a different doctor would have administered your treatment differently, you have a strong case.


Medication Error

A syringe, multiple vaccine vials, and various colored pills placed on a white surface


Patients tend to have blind trust in medical professionals, especially when it comes to doctors administering drugs. Despite how dangerous incorrect drug use can be, the general assumption is that the doctor will prescribe the right one.

However, doctors can prescribe the wrong medication or administer an incorrect dosage. This can cause many long-term health issues. There have been cases of patients sustaining physical and psychological harm due to this careless practice.

You can file a case against your medical practitioner if you believe that there has been a case of medication error that harmed your health and well-being.


Surgery Errors

A surgical tray filled with various surgical equipment

The term ‘Wrong Site, Wrong Procedure, Wrong Patient (WSPE)’ is widely discussed in the medical world due to its dire consequences. The term is used for doctors who perform errors during surgeries.

Although WSPE incidents are most common in orthopedic and dental surgeries, they’re prevalent in other departments as well. The incidences are divided into three different categories, as evidenced by the name.

  1. Wrong Site: This usually means that the surgery was administered on the wrong site in the body. The doctor might have mistaken left for right, or vice versa. This could result in having, say, a perfectly healthy leg being operated on or having the wrong tooth extracted. The consequences vary, but the common thread is that it puts the patient in extreme distress.
  2. Wrong Procedure: This could be an instance of the incorrect medical procedure being performed by a confused or inexperienced doctor. The wrong procedure could be hazardous to a patient’s health, and may even lead to a need for more extensive surgery down the line.
  3. Wrong Person: The least common of the three, wrong person surgeries involve the doctor operating on the wrong patient. This is a cause of extreme oversight, or a mix-up of patient documentation. Whatever the reason, this is perhaps one of the most dangerous errors any healthcare administrator could make.

Alongside WSPE, various errors could be made in a surgery room. There could be instances of surgical equipment being left inside a patient’s body. Many personal injury lawyers manage to get exceptions for their client’s statute of limitation for these instances.

Other instances vary, from puncturing an organ or administering the wrong anesthesia dosage. With surgical errors, even the smallest of mistakes could be lethal and should not be taken lightly.


Childbirth Negligence

A woman undergoing childbirth under the care of a doctor and a nurse


It’s imperative to take the best care of the mother and child during their pregnancy term. Medical malpractice is one of the top reasons for birth injuries in newborn babies. Problems such as brachial plexus—a nerve injury occurring due to incorrect care of the child’s neck during birth—are typical examples of medical negligence. Although a lot of congenital disabilities can be natural, there are quite a few instances where intervention from a competent doctor could have saved the baby from complications.

Although urgent and diligent medical care should be provided to the mother during childbirth, medical negligence can also be part of the treatment plan prescribed to a pregnant woman. Cases of negligent prenatal care that result in overlooked congenital disabilities, or incorrectly diagnosing issues that could complicate childbirth for both mother or fetus all fall under medical mistreatment.

With proof of incorrect care during childbirth or poor prenatal treatment, you could file a case against the healthcare practitioner who was in charge of ensuring a safe delivery for you and your baby.


Expert Guidance

Although medical malpractice can be a traumatic incident, there is no reason to sweep your mistreatment under the rug. It is essential, not only for your well-being, but also for others’, to hold negligent healthcare workers accountable. Hospitals have issued nearly 4 billion USD worth of pay-outs for medical malpractice, and you deserve to be compensated too.

The right personal injury lawyer could have you walking out of the court with your justice served. Lisa Douglas has been practicing as a professional lawyer for years and as a former nurse, is very well-versed in medical and legal jargon. Reach out to her if you would like to have a robust and competent lawyer who’s dedicated to helping you win your case.


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