People put their faith and trust in doctors, nurses, and other healthcare provides when they need medical attention. When medical care is necessary due to an emergency, we expect professionally trained hospital personnel to have the skill and knowledge to provide the required care. When doctors or other health professionals make an error in emergency room or hospital treatment, the results could be catastrophic. Our Baltimore attorneys are committed to holding medical personnel responsible if their actions harm their patients.
If you or a loved one has suffered harm or if a loved one died due to a negligent error in an emergency room or hospital, contact our Baltimore attorney for emergency room and hospital mistakes. Call the experienced malpractice lawyers at the Law Offices of Randolph Rice at (410) 694-7291 today to schedule a free case consultation.
Medical Errors in Baltimore Emergency Rooms and Hospitals Leading to Serious Injury
Baltimore emergency rooms are overflowing with serious cases of medical emergencies, and the emergency room’s medical team typically has limited time and staff to treat all of the patients. A common error in ERs is a missed diagnosis or a misdiagnosis of a medical condition. In some instances, due to time constraints and what may appear to be an apparent condition, an emergency room doctor may fail to thoroughly review a patient’s medical condition and misdiagnose the condition.
Doctors and medical personnel in emergency rooms are often overworked and exhausted. The risk of a mistake increases as fatigue grows. Exhaustion, stress, and a chaotic environment can adversely affect a doctor’s decision-making abilities. Any mistakes, such as careless incisions, mistakes in ordering the proper tests, or medical instruments left inside after an operation, could lead to severe medical complications.
Failing to review a patient’s full medical history can result in medication errors, leading to allergic reactions or unsafe drug interactions. Exhaustion increases the risk of miscommunication between doctors and other medical staff members, which could also result in the mistaken administration of medication. This can happen in the ER or after other treatment at the hospital if the patient is handed from one unit’s nursing staff to another’s.
Infection is a common complication of any medical procedure or visit to a medical facility. Emergency rooms have a higher risk of infections due to the high volume of patients and the type of treatment provided. The facility’s staff has a responsibility to adequately maintain a clean, sterile area.
Malpractice Lawsuits in Baltimore for Emergency Room Injuries and Hospital Death
To prove medical malpractice in Maryland, our Baltimore attorney will have to establish four specific elements of your case:
A doctor or medical professional owes a patient a duty of care that is comparable to the same standard of care a prudent medical professional would provide a patient under similar circumstances. The standard of care is often lower in an emergency room to account for the rush and pressure, but this duty still exists, and a doctor must act reasonably and professionally.
Next, a breach of the duty of care must have occurred. This means the doctor or medical professional failed to adhere to the established standard of care. Every medical error is not a breach of duty – it must be a significant and unjustifiable mistake as opposed to a minor complication.
Your doctor or medical professional’s error must have directly led to the injury. If the doctor’s conduct did nothing to worsen a patient’s condition or if the best possible emergency treatment would not have saved a patient, the doctor’s negligence might not have caused the injury or death.
Finally, the injury or harm must have resulted in actual damages. Economic damages are easily quantifiable, such as medical costs, lost wages, or legal fees. Noneconomic damages are more challenging to calculate and often include pain and suffering or psychological distress.
It is important to note that Maryland follows the contributory negligence doctrine in personal injury claims. This doctrine means that if a jury finds a patient’s actions were partially to blame for their injury, they will be unable to collect damages. For example, a patient could knowingly conceal crucial information from a treating physician that directly results in an error in medical judgment. It is essential to consult a Baltimore injury attorney to discuss how this will affect your medical malpractice claim for an emergency room death or hospital mistake.
Holding the Hospital Liable for Mistakes, Injuries, and Death in Baltimore
Medical malpractice claims are filed against physicians alone; other medical professionals and hospital employees might also be held liable for their negligence through a medical malpractice claim. A hospital is usually responsible for the negligent conduct of its employees under the doctrine of respondeat superior. This means a hospital could be held vicariously liable for an employee’s negligent conduct if the employee was acting within the scope of their employment when the negligence occurred.
In most circumstances, a doctor or health care provider in private practice is considered an independent contractor and not a hospital employee. A hospital is generally immune from liability for the conduct of an independent contractor and the doctrine of respondeat superior does not apply. However, a hospital can often be liable for negligent acts by independent contractors who operate or work in an emergency department or any doctors or other staff members who were employees. Talk to one of our Baltimore emergency room and hospital mistakes attorneys to help determine if the hospital can be held liable for your injuries.
Call Our Baltimore Injury Attorney for Emergency Room and Hospital Mistakes
Doctors and nurses make mistakes in emergency room treatments. If you or a loved has suffered harm or death from the negligent conduct of medical professionals or hospital employees while receiving emergency room or hospital treatment, consult a Baltimore injury attorney today. The experienced emergency room and hospital mistakes attorneys at the Law Offices of Randolph Rice may be able to help you get compensated for your harm. Call (410) 694-7291 today to schedule a free consultation.