When we go see a doctor, we put our trust in him and the institution that he represents. We have confidence that he’ll be able to treat our ailments, and we expect to be adequately handled by the hospital and its staff. But because doctors are just human and people run hospitals, mistakes could occur. Although medical professionals are trained to take care of the sick and debilitated, there are times when they do make mistakes. Their mistakes, however, can cost people their lives.
Because we all go to hospitals when we get sick or maybe for our routine checks, we must be aware of what actions indicate negligence. Even though medical professionals are experts in their field, we should have some knowledge about what we’re doing to better protect ourselves or our loved ones. Here are some issues that we should know about and watch out for.
1. The doctor misdiagnosed a disease.
Misdiagnosing an ailment is a crucial mistake. If a doctor fails to identify what is ailing a person, then that person will miss many opportunities to heal or get help from other experts. When it comes to diseases, especially cancer, any mistake on the doctor’s part could rob precious patient time. In addition to misdiagnosing, failing to diagnose a disease promptly is also a grave mistake. When certain conditions are not treated quickly, these could get worse. Patients could suffer more or die because of these mistakes.
2. The hospital decides to keep an inept staff.
Hospitals are responsible for the actions of their employees. Because of this, all medical facilities also must ensure that their workers are competent, knowledgeable, and skilled. When a hospital decides to keep an employee that keeps on making mistakes, both the worker and the institution can be sued for negligence.
3. The hospital staff commits a medication error.
Medicines are given to patients to make them better. It is the right of a patient to be given the right medication, and it should have the correct dosage and presented during the right time via the right route, such as orally or through intravascular administration. When a doctor makes a mistake in the dosage, he is liable. A dose that’s too little will probably not work, while an overdose could be life-threatening, particularly when it comes to emergency or dangerous drugs, such as atropine or epinephrine. Nurses could also make mistakes in giving medicines. When medication errors occur, a patient has every right to sue the staff responsible.
4. Staff miscommunication.
Each member of a healthcare team has a job to do. If he fails to do his job well and if he fails to communicate vital details, then he puts his patient at risk. For instance, a nurse caring for a patient with congestive heart failure must tell the physician about observations that could indicate that the patient’s condition is getting worse. If she fails to do this or overlooks vital details, she is liable in case the patient dies. Thus, it’s critical for nurses, doctors, and other members of a team to communicate observations and crucial information to safeguard a patient’s health.