During an illness, many people trust doctors to do everything in their power to help them beat different conditions. Unfortunately, some people end up dying or suffering worse situations, such as paralysis due to medical errors caused by those same doctors.
According to researchers, a big percentage of deaths that occur in America come from medical errors. Medical mistakes are among the top leading cause of death of people in the States after cancer and heart disease. If care providers could show better coordination, some of these deaths that occur every day in hospitals could be prevented. Unfortunately, most of the health care organizations in America seem to be struggling to enhance safety.
Check out the statistics of Medical malpractice in America
The number of medical malpractice deaths keeps on rising each year. This is quite ironic considering the advanced technological systems that are used in hospitals to boost care. According to a particular study, about 250000 patients die every year due to doctor negligence. More than 12,000 people die out of undergoing unnecessary surgery, while 80,000 others die from infections. Different organizations have been following up on patients’ deaths caused by medical errors and helping families get compensation for their loss.
In New York alone, medical malpractice payouts amounted to $ 7 billion between 2009 and 2018. Most people who are sued for medical malpractice are MD physicians. Between these years, more than 85,000 patients reported cases of malpractice caused by physicians. The top states in America with the highest medical malpractice cases are Texas, New York, California, and Florida. These states have a population of more than 100 million people.
According to statistics, these states alone had more than 100,000 malpractice cases where specific physicians were forced to make payments related to this. Over the years, North Dakota has continued to report the lowest cases of medical malpractice. Estimating how malpractice sometimes occurs in the medical field is difficult since it sometimes goes unreported. Some doctors don’t like admitting medical errors due to the fear of losing their licenses.
Who is to blame for this?
Experts in the medical field reveal that a lapse in judgment or the lack of skill sometimes leads to medical errors. Some people have been misdiagnosed since they are treated by student doctors instead of well-trained practitioners who have more experience in the field. Apart from that, system failures or breakdowns in communications sometimes lead to medical errors in some patients. Other patients have also died due to being given the wrong medication or drugs they are allergic to. Such causes sometimes lead to patient death or the failure to save a patient who is about to lose their life.
Some patients have also sued individual doctors with the claim that they were negligent in their jobs. Negligence means that a physician fails to perform reasonably based on the standards of conduct. There have been many cases related to patients dying due to surgeons leaving foreign objects in the body. Sometimes, doctors work on the wrong body part or operate on the wrong patients. All these are examples of negligence that sometimes lead to death.
Though no one is perfect, such errors can be avoided when dealing with people’s lives if only doctors had better coordination. Better training of staff and following strict protocols can also boost the health care system and reduce such cases.
If you are a patient or have a loved one in the hospital who you feel is not receiving the best care, you should get in touch with a lawyer from Snapka Law Firm. If you decide to sue a certain facility for medical malpractice caused by negligence, you can win such a case if it meets specific criteria. For instance, you must show a breach of duty and elaborate on how the physician’s actions caused harm to you or the patient.
Protect yourself from such medical errors in the following ways
Though a medical error is a significant concern, you can protect yourself as a patient differently. You can minimize the risks of such errors by being part of your healthcare. Being the patient means that you are equally as important as your doctors and nurses. Ask questions if you don’t understand what your doctor says. You can use your smartphone to learn more about your condition from online sources. Read about it and understand the treatment options available, as well as their risks.
Do not hesitate to seek a different opinion from another doctor if your condition is serious. A good doctor will even encourage this since every patient needs to feel comfortable before receiving treatment. You can even download a relevant healthcare app so that you can have all the details regarding your condition at your fingertips.
Give the doctors your full medical history before you start taking any medication. This can prevent you from getting drugs that can cause an allergic reaction. If you have been taking certain medications, you should also share this information with the nurse to avoid any negative reactions caused by the interaction of certain drugs. You can even bring all the drugs you have been taking with you during your next appointment with the doctor.
Ensure that the rest of your healthcare team members know everything they should regarding your condition. When staff members communicate all the relevant details regarding your case with one another, they can avoid making any medical errors. If you are admitted, you should try to avoid any risk of infection by doing things such as washing your hands frequently. Keep any surgical wounds clean and ensure that they are dressed properly and occasionally to avoid further complications.
Lastly, you need to choose a medical facility that has the highest safety standards. Take your time to choose the hospital you want to seek treatment from and investigate if patients have reported medical malpractice. Choosing a highly rated hospital with fewer cases can give you peace of mind as you receive proper care.