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Medical Malpractice | Hospital Errors and Patient’s Rights
In 2012 the Institute of Medicine/National Academy of Sciences reported that 98,000 Americans died annually as a result of preventable medical errors.1 By 2016, the British Medical Journal (BMJ) reported that the number had risen to a staggering 250,000.”2
Preventable medical errors kill more Americans than diabetes, influenza and Alzheimer’s. The 2016 study noted above indicated that if tracked separately, medical errors would be the third leading cause of death in the United States, behind only cancer and heart disease.
Types of Medical Errors and Hospital Malpractice
- General Hospital Errors
- Hospital Infections
- Hospital Night Shift Medical Errors
- Incorrect Medication & Medical Malpractice
- Surgical Errors and Abandoned Foreign Objects During Surgery
Health care is substantially more dangerous than it should be. The cost of avoidable medical errors is estimated at $500 billion a year, or 30 percent of all health care spending.3
In the April 2008 issue of Pediatrics, a study using a new detection method found that accidental overdoses and medication mix-ups and bad drug interactions harm one out of 15 hospitalized children. This translates to over 7% of children admitted to the hospital or about 540,000 children each year.
This estimate uses monitoring methods involving evaluations of medical records for triggers such as antidotes for drug overdoses and suspicious side effects. Previous estimates for medical error relied on self-reporting by hospital staff and non-specific chart reviews, and found less than 4% of the problems identified in the new study.
The reporting and tracking of preventable medical errors offers the best hope for prevention — yet neither doctors nor hospitals are obligated to report their errors. Studies have found that doctors are often slow or fail to disclose a medical error to patients.4
Medical Negligence Law & Your Rights
The law of most states provides persons who have been seriously injured as the result of the negligence of another with several legal claims. The injured person may file a lawsuit seeking compensation for his or her pain and suffering, medical expenses, lost past and future wages and punitive damages.
In the case of a patient’s death due to the negligence or medical malpractice, surviving family members may file a wrongful death lawsuit against the healthcare provider.
Contact Lieff Cabraser
A catastrophic injury or the loss of a loved one is a horrific tragedy, and we understand that it can be overwhelming, especially when the injury or death may have been caused by the negligence or wrongdoing of another.
Lieff Cabraser attorneys are experienced in handling personal injury cases nationwide. We are committed to providing the finest legal representation possible. We will review your medical malpractice case promptly, free of charge and in strict confidence.
If you or a loved one has been injured as a result of a medical error, please use the form below or call us toll-free at 1 (800) 541-7358 and ask to speak to attorney Fabrice Vincent.
- Institute of Medicine/National Academy of Sciences, ‘‘To Err Is Human: Building a Safer Health System,” 2003
- British Medical Journal, ‘‘Medical error—the third leading cause of death in the US,” 2016
- Forbes, “Fixing Hospitals,” by Robert Langreth, June 20, 2005
- Journal of General Internal Medicine, May 2007.
About Lieff Cabraser
Founded in 1972, Lieff Cabraser Heimann & Bernstein, LLP is a sixty-plus attorney law firm with offices in San Francisco, New York and Nashville. For the last ten years, the National Law Journal has recognized Lieff Cabraser as one of the top plaintiffs’ law firms in America.
For our personal injury cases, we bring a team of experienced lawyers. Each client is assigned an individual lawyer. In addition, we have on staff multiple nurses, legal assistants, scientific analysts and case clerks to assist the attorneys. Learn more about our firm.