A patient who is prematurely discharged from a hospital emergency room (“ER”) can suffer severe consequences. A medical professional who acts with negligence in the course of treatment in the ER can be liable for medical malpractice. This article will help you understand and identify negligent conduct in a hospital emergency room.
Liability for Hospital Emergency Room ErrorsThe manic, fast paced environment of the hospital emergency room creates a greater likelihood of error than in typical, calmer circumstances. This does not mean that emergency room errors should be more easily excused. Doctors, nurses and other medical professionals receive specialized medical training which should reduce the likelihood of errors and accidents from occurring.
One of the most common errors in the ER is the premature discharge of a patient from a hospital or medical facility. If such occurs as the result of negligent conduct by the doctor or medical practitioner, a legal claim may be made for compensation. Monetary damages which may include lost wages and income, pain and suffering, reimbursement of medical expenses and payment as a result of wrongful death.
Common Emergency Room ErrorsSome emergency room errors are the result of a doctor or nurse not taking a patient complaint seriously. Others may be the result of the treating physician being distracted in the ER or having their concentration impaired by a condition such as inadequate sleep. The following is a list of common emergency room errors that may result in an actionable claim for a premature discharge from the ER. Medical malpractice may have occurred when there is a failure to:
- Conduct appropriate testing that would have been reasonable under the circumstances
- Identify and/or diagnose a serious bacterial or viral infection
- Diagnose a brain injury and/or recognize its symptoms
- Adequately identify the symptoms of an aneurysm, stroke or heart attack
- Diagnose the signs of obvious trauma to internal organs such as the spleen, abdomen or liver
- Note or recognize a psychiatric problem of the patient (typically suicidal thoughts or other statements of self-infliction of harm)
- Refer patients for further treatment or specialized testing or observation
- Behave in a manner that conforms to accepted standards of professional conduct (such as wrongfully accusing a patient of taking drugs or exaggerating symptoms)
Legal Issues, Lawyers and LawsuitsAnswering a question as to whether medical malpractice has occurred in a hospital emergency room will typically require expert knowledge and experience. It is important to seek out the advice of an experienced medical malpractice attorney in a timely fashion since the statute of limitations in your state may bar a legal claim after a period of time. In many instances a legal consultation will be free and it can help you educate yourself on whether a claim exists and the best way to move forward.
- Health, Medical & Social:
- Hospital Malpractice
Hospital Malpractice Emergency Room Errors & Premature Hospital Discharge
By Michael M. Wechsler |
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