When you seek the advice and assistance of a doctor or other medical professional, you expect to be met with knowledge, compassion, competency and effective care. Unfortunately, this does not always happen, and medical negligence occurs more often than we would like to think. Even worse, medical negligence or medical malpractice often has devastating results, including serious medical complications, long-term effects or even death.
When a Morgantown resident requires medical treatment and hospitalization, he or she is putting their lives in the hands of the medical professionals who will be caring for them. While the vast majority of people who are treated are given a high standard of care with few if any complications, there is always a risk for medical malpractice. Most don't consider the number of errors that are made and think there are fewer than there actually are. Research, however, has indicated that there are many fatal medical errors on an annual basis.
Several doctors and pharmacies in West Virginia are facing strict scrutiny from a state review panel. The panel was created by the governor in 2013, and it works in conjunction with the Boards of Pharmacy and Medicine after writing and filling prescriptions that led to the overdose deaths of several patients. One doctor alone wrote prescriptions for six different patients that all overdosed in a six month period.
Entering a medical facility for any procedure is scary. While patients put their trust in medical professionals every day, there are often unknown risks. The flip side to this is that care providers do their best to prevent accidents. The rising cost of healthcare has everyone on edge, including physicians.
When you are experiencing medical problems, you expect a doctor to properly treat and diagnose your condition. Unfortunately, thousands of patients suffer each year because of medical misdiagnoses or delayed diagnoses. A doctor's error in diagnosis could lead to improper treatment, delayed treatment or no treatment at all. In these cases, what you don't know can kill you.
Clinics around the state of West Virginia have a duty to care for their patients. This means maintaining clean facilities, proper protocols and a sanitary environment. Doctors and staff have a responsibility to their patients that should not be breached. A clinic has the same responsibilities to its patients as any other hospital or medical facility. It's important for doctors to be held accountable for their actions if they are creating an unsafe or risky environment for patients. Failing to do so could constitute medical negligence and a doctor or clinic could be liable for the resulting injuries.
You may have heard about birth injuries and birth defects. You may have a child who is suffering the effects of a birth injury or defect. While a birth defect generally relates to a harm done to the baby before birth, a birth injury is generally caused by something that went wrong during delivery. Many birth injuries are preventable by doctors, midwives and nurses.
A wrong diagnosis and improper treatment can have devastating consequences. Doctors know that when they recite the Hippocratic Oath that they are adhering to practice medicine in an ethical manner. That means being up-to-date on medication, diagnoses and recalls. If a product is recalled or has potentially damaging side effects, a doctor should be informed about all the repercussions if they are prescribing medicine for West Virginia residents. If a doctor makes a mistake in prescribing a drug, it could be very damaging to a person's health.
A botched treatment by a physician can lead to additional surgeries and thousands of dollars in medical bills. Poor treatment in a hospital can be the difference between a successful recovery and long-term medical issues. If you are the victim of negligence while being treated at a hospital, it is important to know that you can take steps to recover compensation for medical costs and other damages, including pain and suffering. Medical negligence can take the forms of delayed treatment, hospital errors that could be avoided and surgical problems. If the negligence was particularly egregious, it may even rise to the level of gross negligence by a doctor.
When a loved one stays at a hospital, a certain standard of care is expected from staff and doctors; hospital malpractice is rarely, if ever, expected. The family of a loved one who is in the hospital holds a doctor and staff accountable for that standard of care. In West Virginia, doctors and care staff are there to provide for your loved one. If their behavior is negligent, patients' families may be eligible to recover costs through a wrongful death suit involving medical malpractice.