The Institute of Medicine's semi-annual study of preventable medical errors estimated as many as 98,000 people die every year at a cost of $29 billion from medical malpractice. Despite these numbers, Americans still seem unaware of just how prevalent the problem is. Many people believe there are thousands of medical negligence lawsuits and only a few genuine medical errors. Unfortunately there are very few medical negligence lawsuits and thousands dying from preventable medical errors. As University of Pennsylvania law Professor Tom Baker puts it, "We have an epidemic of medical malpractice, not of malpractice lawsuits." The Chicago medical malpractice lawyers at Lipkin & Apter are here to explain the many kinds of medical malpractice claims that you may not be familiar with. Below are the most common medical malpractice lawsuits.
When a patient seeks medical help, they trust that their doctor or healthcare provider will perform the necessary steps to determine their diagnosis and prescribe the best course of treatment for recovery. Misdiagnosis is a form of medical malpractice because failing to properly diagnose or treat a medical condition can often lead to further injury or even death.
Birth injury lawsuits occur when babies are injured before or during childbirth by the careless or intentional acts of a medical provider.
Pharmaceutical or medication errors occur when a healthcare provider is negligent in providing the proper medication for a patient. Medical malpractice lawsuits for medication errors result when the healthcare provider fails to properly advise the patient on the proper use of a prescribed medication, when the incorrect labels are put on a medication, when a medication prescription is filled incorrectly or when the patient receives the wrong dose or type of medication.
Even the smallest error by an anesthesiologist can result in permanent damage, injury or death to a patient. These errors could occur if the anesthesiologist fails to investigate the patient's medical history for any potential complications or if they fail to inform the patient of the risks involved such as not eating for a certain period of time prior to surgery.
Surgeons need to take extreme care when working with patients. Some medical malpractice lawsuits arise from surgery errors if the surgeon was negligent during an operation.
Nursing Home Abuse and Neglect
The safety and rights of nursing home residents in Illinois are protected under the Illinois Nursing Home Care Act. However nursing home neglect and abuse still happens and medical malpractice or negligence lawsuits can protect victims and their families.
Medical malpractice cases often involve some of the most serious injuries, that is why it is extremely important to hire an experienced medical malpractice attorney.
Have you or a loved one suffered due to some form of medical malpractice? If you have, our Chicago medical malpractice injury attorneys may be able to help you. We've helped many individuals and families caught up in difficult, life-destroying situations receive compensation. Contact our Chicago law firm today to schedule a free consultation.
¹ Tom Baker, The Medical Malpractice Myth, 2005.