When we get sick or hurt, we go to the doctor or hospital for treatment. We trust that the medical professionals who we see will do all they can to treat us. This includes following all protocols to ensure that no mistakes are made in our treatments. When there are mistakes made by a doctor, nurse, or other medical worker, the results are often catastrophic for the patient and far too often results in the patient’s death. These incidents happen more and more and are increasing each year at an alarming rate.
In fact, according to national statistics, medical errors and negligence is the third leading cause of death in this country, following heart disease and cancer. Many of these incidents result in medical malpractice lawsuits. These cases have become so frequent that it is estimated there is more than $3 billion spent each year in malpractice settlements.
What Is Medical Malpractice?
Malpractice is defined as an incident where a medical professional deviates from accepted standard of care in their treatment of a patient. Standard of care is what a reasonable medical provider would do under the same circumstances. If it is determined that the medical professional did not meet the standard of care and that failure resulted in an injury to the patient, then both the medical professional and/or the medical facility can be held accountable.
Examples of Medical Malpractice
Unfortunately, most patients and their families may not even realize that the action of the medical professional is negligent until it is too late. Some of the more common medical negligence behaviors that we have seen at our Virginia malpractice law firm include:
- Diagnostic testing mistakes or failure to order necessary tests
- Discharging too soon
- Errors made taking patient history
- Failure to identify symptoms
- Inadequate follow-up care
- Medication errors
- Misinterpreting or overlooking laboratory results
- Surgical errors, such as operating on the wrong body area
Contact Shapiro & Appleton for Help
If you or a family member has suffered serious illness due to a doctor’s missed or late diagnosis, contact a seasoned Virginia medical malpractice attorney to discuss what legal options you may have. The attorneys at our personal injury firm understand how devastating medical errors like these can be to a family, not only emotionally, but also financially. We have successfully represented many clients in obtaining the financial compensation they deserved and will aggressively advocate for you and your family.