5 Common Mistakes That Lead to Personal Injury
Individuals looking for a hospital mistake lawyer Washington DC can trust may already know that medical malpractice injuries can be traumatic, life-changing, and even fatal. At Cohen and Cohen, P.C., our law firm knows that many medical malpractice cases come about because of small mistakes — but in the medical industry, small mistakes can mean irreparable damage for the victims. When a victim is injured at a hospital while receiving medical care, the victim (or the victim’s family) deserves to receive adequate compensation.
As any experienced hospital mistake lawyer Washington DC can offer might explain, medical malpractice cases can be very complicated. A plaintiff must first prove that the injury or illness was a direct cause of inadequate medical care, diagnosis, or testing; in addition to this, the plaintiff must prove that the mistake could have been prevented if the medical professional had exhibited reasonable care. The burden of proof is heavy for plaintiffs in medical malpractice lawsuits and this is why many people choose to seek legal counsel from a good hospital mistake lawyer Washington DC has to offer.
At Cohen and Cohen, P.C., our legal team is dedicated to helping medical malpractice victims and their families receive the compensatory damages they rightfully deserve. Our firm has provided legal counsel to many potential clients who have had questions and concerns about medical mistakes made in hospitals. Here are some of the most common types of hospital mistakes that a hospital mistake lawyer in Washington DC might see:
1. Childbirth Injuries
An injury during childbirth that may justify a medical malpractice claim can affect only the mother, only the child (or children), or it can affect both parties. Many medical malpractice cases related to childbirth injuries pursue damages for the children who are delivered improperly.
Mistakes made during delivery — especially when the mistakes affect the head, brain, or spine — have been known to cause lifelong brain damage, seizures, and nerve damage. It’s also possible for poor prenatal care to cause harm to the child and/or mother.
Not all childbirth injuries can fall under the category of malpractice, as a seasoned hospital mistake lawyer Washington DC trusts might know. Medical malpractice claims cannot be filed against individuals who are not medical professionals or would not know the proper way of providing a specific medical treatment. A plaintiff must also prove that the birthing injury could have been prevented with reasonable care.
2. Medication Errors
Several types of mistakes can occur in a hospital when medication is involved. These errors can involve prescription drugs or controlled substances — as many hospitals have their own internal pharmacies — or errors can be associated with over-the-counter drugs like ibuprofen.
An experienced hospital mistake lawyer Washington DC can provide can see the following types of medication errors in a malpractice case:
Errors regarding medication may not necessarily considered preventable mistakes, and because of this, they might not qualify for a medical malpractice case. In some situations a doctor or nurse is not able to predict, using reasonable care, that a patient will experience negative side effects, or that a very specific combination of drugs will interact.
3. Anesthesia Errors
Anesthesia problems can result when a patient receives too little anesthesia or too much, or when a patient’s medical history is not consulted before administering the drug. With too little anesthesia, the patient could wake up in the middle of surgery. With too much, a patient could suffer long-term brain damage or even death.
Many hospitals employ anesthesiologists: specialized doctors who analyze each patient’s medical history in order to determine possible complications and in order to provide the correct dosage. When any details of a patient’s medical history are ignored, it’s possible that the anesthesia could lead to complications.
4. Surgical Errors
In addition to anesthesia errors, there are other types of mistakes that doctors and nurses could potentially make in the operating room.
It’s possible for patients to leave the hospital with “surgical souvenirs,” for example. This error, made during a surgical operation, is when the surgical team miscounts instruments before or after the surgery — and accidentally leaves a surgical instrument inside the patient’s body. Leaving the hospital with a “surgical souvenir” might not present any serious complications to a patient, but as a hospital mistake lawyer Washington DC would know, it’s possible for small instruments to cause serious damage.
It’s also possible for a patient to have an allergic reaction to a material or medication used in the operating room. A patient with a latex allergy might react to the use of latex gloves, for example, if a doctor or nurse failed to note the patient’s allergies beforehand.
In the past, there have been cases where doctors and nurses performed surgeries under the influence of drugs or alcohol, and devastating mistakes have resulted. Even a surgeon who is sleep-deprived could make a big mistake in the operating room. There is always some level of risk involved in a surgical procedure, but when a mistake was preventable, it might justify a lawsuit.
5. Treating the Wrong Patient
As an experienced hospital mistake lawyer Washington DC could attest, this type of mistake has been surprisingly common in the past. Doctors and nurses can easily mix up patients when providing treatment, especially if the hospital is overcrowded or understaffed. Patients in a hospital may not have the cognitive functioning to detect that a doctor or nurse is providing the wrong treatment.
It is imperative for hospital staff to check a patient’s name, date of birth, or any other identifying information to ensure that they are treating the right patient.
Contact a Washington DC Hospital Mistake Lawyer Today
Even when a hospital error is just a mistake, when a doctor, nurse, or surgeon fails to exercise reasonable care, a patient can suffer from debilitating and life-threatening injuries. When a patient suffers a very damaging error, he or she — or the family — may be entitled to financial compensation through a medical malpractice claim.
At Cohen and Cohen, P.C., our lawyers are dedicated to serving the community of Washington DC. We believe that every patient deserves the utmost care and concern from medical professionals during hospital treatment. To find out more information about how our legal team has helped injured clients receive settlement money after a medical mistake, or to schedule a free case evaluation with a top hospital mistake lawyer Washington DC residents trust, contact our local office today.