Doctors, surgeons, nurses, medical practitioners, pharmacists, and hospital staff members alike – essentially anyone working with medical patients – must always act with the utmost care and certainty. When they do not, a patient’s health and safety could be jeopardized, resulting in an act of medical malpractice or medical negligence. Indeed, the concern over harm that a single mistake could make is so great, medical professionals today still take the Hippocratic Oath, originating from the Ancient Greeks, which promises to do everything possible to do no harm to patients in their care.
However, even the best doctor can have a lapse in judgement and even the worst practitioner might not lose his or her medical license immediately. The end result of these errors and oversights are thousands of acts of medical malpractice, carried out either by individual medical professionals or entire healthcare institutions, every year in America. Several recent studies, including those carried out by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), have even concluded that hospital negligence and error are some of the leading causes of accidental death in the country.
Forms of Medical Malpractice
Mississippi considers medical malpractice a form of personal injury claim stemming from negligence. As with any sort of injury claim, it must first begin with identifying the injury caused and who caused it.
Some of the most common forms of medical malpractice cited in claims in Mississippi are:
- Failing to meet acceptable standards of care.
- Misdiagnosing an injury or illness as another condition.
- Not diagnosing a condition that should have been noticeable.
- Surgical mistakes, such as operating on the wrong body part.
- Prescribing or providing incorrect medication or dosage amounts.
- Nursing home abuse.
- Birth injuries.
- Leaving operation tools inside a patient after the procedure ends.
For a medical malpractice case, it can be difficult to know exactly who is to blame. Was it the error of a single doctor, or did an entire medical team miscommunicate? Could the hospital group be partially liable for employing untrained specialists? It is often necessary to consult with a medical malpractice attorney to pinpoint liability when filing a claim for compensation.
Acting After a Medical Malpractice Incident
After a patient is injured due to medical malpractice, it can be a stressful time in which it seems help is nowhere to be found. Mistreated patients often and understandably do not want to trust another doctor to help them. However, a medical error can only be corrected by appropriate care from a more reliable physician, doctor, surgeon, and so forth.
If you have been hurt due to medical malpractice, you should:
- Get medical attention: You cannot ignore the health conditions and injuries caused by a negligent medical practitioner. Doing so will not only jeopardize your health further but could also invalidate any medical malpractice claim you attempt to file later. As soon as you know you need help, seek it immediately.
- Collect medical records: Ask for copies of your entire medical record for thoroughness. An insurance company representing the negligent doctor or institution could try to argue that your injuries were preexisting or unrelated to the act of medical malpractice. Your medical record should help you prove your case with solid facts.
- Call an attorney: Before you talk to any insurance companies, you should really consider first retaining the services of a Mississippi medical malpractice attorney. With an injury lawyer on your side, you can better anticipate and react to insurance company inquiries, increasing your chances of receiving fair and maximized compensation for your injuries. Your attorney should also be capable of organizing your claim and creating your argument to present in settlement negotiations or courtroom litigation.
Were you or a loved one hurt due to an act of medical malpractice? Richard Schwartz & Associates, P.A and our team of Mississippi medical malpractice lawyers want to help you through this difficult time by providing clear and effective legal counsel and representation backed by 30+ years of experience. Contact our firm today, schedule a free case evaluation, and get started on your case with confidence.