Working in an emergency room means working long hours under intense pressure. Any situation can come through the door at any time. It’s a pressure cooker of a job, and the doctors and nurses who help people in emergencies deserve recognition and gratitude for their commitment to saving lives.
Unfortunately, patients don’t always receive the emergency care they deserve. Favorable outcomes aren’t guaranteed, but certain mistakes are simply unacceptable. At LawMD, we hold negligent hospitals and careless ER doctors accountable for their errors. The bottom line is that no patient should have to pay the consequences of a doctor’s mistake or a hospital’s failure to provide proper care.
For a free consultation with a Baltimore emergency room error attorney, call (888) 695-2963 or contact us online.
Common Emergency Room Mistakes
Emergency rooms in the U.S. treat approximately 136.3 million patients every year. Some of these cases involve minor injuries, such as cuts and sprains. Other cases involve life-and-death situations, from car accident injuries to heart attacks. Mistakes can happen in any situation, however, some errors occur more often than others.
Common emergency room errors include:
- Improper triage (not treating the most critical patients first)
- Delaying treatment
- Misinterpretation of test results
- Downplaying or ignoring symptoms
- Failure to check for drug allergies or drug interactions
- Dispensing the wrong kind of medication
- Dispensing the wrong dosage of medication
- Failure to order lab tests and other diagnostic tests
- Failure to diagnose
Additionally, certain health problems are more prone to misdiagnosis in emergency rooms. These cases include heart attacks, strokes, meningitis, and infections. When patients are misdiagnosed and sent home, a treatable condition can quickly deteriorate into a life-threatening health crisis. In the most catastrophic cases, a patient dies hours or days after being sent home by emergency room staff.
Why Emergency Room Mistakes Happen
Because emergency room personnel work in a high-pressure environment that requires rapid decision-making, they are held to a different standard of care compared to health professionals in other specialties. Nevertheless, they are still responsible for negligence and unacceptable errors that endanger patient safety and cause harm and death.
In an era of overcrowded hospitals and understaffed health care facilities, emergency room errors are, unfortunately, on the rise.
Many factors contribute to these unfortunate mistakes, including:
- Passing patients off to another doctor
- Forcing patients to see a nurse or nurse practitioner
- Lack of training
- Poor hospital procedures
- Defective or malfunctioning equipment
- Shortage of beds
- Not spending enough time with a patient
- Failure to monitor and follow-up
In some cases, emergency room mistakes occur because a doctor or nurse is too fatigued to deliver the proper level of care. In other situations, emergency rooms attempt to reduce their patient volume by glossing over symptoms or minimizing the severity of a patient’s complaints.
Compensation for Emergency Room Errors
Patients injured by emergency room doctors and nurses may be entitled to compensation for their injuries. Possible damages include pain and suffering, medical bills, lost wages, loss of earning capacity, permanent disability, future medical care, mental anguish, and other losses. The law limits the amount of time you have to file a claim for an emergency room error, so it’s important to act quickly to protect your rights. If you wait to speak to an attorney, you could miss your opportunity to get the justice and compensation you deserve.
If you believe you have been the victim of an emergency room error, a Baltimore emergency room error lawyer may be able to help you. Call today to receive your free case evaluation. You can also reach us by email or through our online contact form.
Call (888) 695-2963 today to get started.