We seek medical care when we’re ill or injured and need professional medical guidance and treatment. When your doctor’s care makes you worse instead of better, it can be particularly harsh. And if your health deteriorates because of medical malpractice, it’s that much more difficult still. Medical professionals owe you a standard of care that is reasonable and prudent. Failure to provide this level of care can lead to serious—even deadly—consequences.
There are certain things that should simply never happen in a surgical facility, and the Joint Commission—a nonprofit that accredits health care organizations in the United States— refers to these occurrences as sentinel events (also known as never events). While such blatant errors are rare, they do happen, and when they do, it usually means that there’s a fundamental breakdown in the facility’s mechanism for patient safety. Sentinel events include such egregious errors as performing the wrong surgery, performing the right surgery on the wrong limb, performing a surgery that shouldn’t have been recommended in the first place, or leaving surgical instruments inside the patient. Medical events such as these are always indicative of medical malpractice, and the consequences are often devastating.
Medical malpractice can come in many different forms, but there are a few types that are more common than others:
- Medication errors. Errors in medication are among the most common medical mistakes made, and they can be especially egregious errors because medications can often cause serious side effects. Medical professionals in the chain from prescribing to dispensing medications are responsible for administering appropriate medications to appropriate recipients.
- Surgical errors. Not all surgical errors are never events. Sometimes surgical errors involve maintaining unsanitary conditions that lead to dangerous infections, injuring a nearby organ during the surgical process, or administering anesthesia dangerously or incorrectly.
- Post-surgical infections. While infection is always a possibility, they are sometimes the result of medical facilities that don’t maintain adequate sanitary conditions. Post-surgical infections can lead to debilitating pain and ongoing health concerns.
If you think you may be the victim of medical malpractice, seek experienced legal counsel immediately.
Medical Malpractice Happens
A comprehensive 2017 survey reported on by the Institute for Healthcare Improvement found that a full 21 percent of those surveyed had suffered medical errors. During the last 10 years, Virginia has seen more than 16,000 adverse action reports resulting in almost 2,000 medical malpractice payment reports.
Such errors frequently resulted in overarching personal damages, including diminished health, exorbitant expense, and negative emotional consequences. This survey serves to highlight that medical malpractice happens all too often and that the negative consequences are considerable.
If You Were Injured by Medical Malpractice, Consult an Experienced Virginia Medical Malpractice Attorney Today
If you are the victim of what you believe is medical malpractice, you are likely overwhelmed by the situation. You are not alone, however. The dedicated medical malpractice attorneys at Emroch & Kilduff have the compassion and experience to fight for your rights and for the compensation to which you are entitled. We’re here to help, so please contact Emroch & Kilduff or call us at (804) 358-1568 today.