Do you know that medical malpractice frequently happens more than you ever realize? As patients, we trust doctors and the rest of the medical health team to address our health concerns. Rest assured, we put our faith in them that we are in good hands.
However, what will you do if a medical professional’s treatment caused you unintentional harm? What if it falls below the standard of the medical community and has caused injury? Would you file a lawsuit and sue?
You have to be aware that medical practice can take in several forms:
- misdiagnosis, failure to diagnose
- ignoring or misreading laboratory results
- surgical errors (unnecessary surgery, surgery of the wrong site or person, anesthesia errors)
- wrong medication dosage
- poor follow-up
- premature discharge
- failing to test properly
- failing to identify symptoms
- disregarding, failing to take proper medical history and assessment
Here are essential tips on what should you do if medical malpractice happens to you:
At this point, you have to be ready to document every single detail. This would be times, dates, names of medical professionals (doctors, nurses, physical therapists, etc.) It’s vital for you to be descriptive of the things that transpired that lead to the incident.
Always ask questions
You might be intimidated to do so, but never hesitate to ask doctors and nurses. It is your right as a patient to ask what’s going on, how did a particular incident happen to you, and what are the necessary steps that are needed. Being persistent is crucial because after all, it is your health and body that are at stake.
Always request a copy of your medical records
Most patients don’t know this, but they are entitled to look through their medical records. It is your right to access your personal medical files. Once you get a hold of them, make sure everything is complete. When you’re requesting for records, it’s better not to tell them that the reason you’re requesting for it is because you’re planning to sue or will contact a lawyer.
Again, persistence is key- don’t take no for an answer. You can access your files either through the hospital or the doctor’s office. Sometimes, a written request will take several days to be released.
Seek legal counsel
As you know, medical practice cases can be lengthy, expensive and a lot more complicated than you think. A critical step that you can take in handling medical malpractice is hiring an attorney who specializes in medical practice. Take note that each state has different medical malpractice laws. The right medical practice lawyer can advise you whether or not a case is worth filing a lawsuit. If you want to know more information about the best legal options, click here.
You can protect yourself by being an advocate of your own health. Medical malpractice can cause a lot of stress and devastating consequences for you and your loved ones. If ever this happens to you, make sure to prepare a detailed documentation, request a copy of your medical questions, don’t be intimidated to ask questions and finally seek out the help of a medical malpractice lawyer.