When Does a Misdiagnosis Warrant a Lawsuit?March 13, 2018
According to a study by Johns Hopkins University, medical errors are responsible for over 250,000 fatalities per year in the United States, making it the third leading cause of fatality. The two most common medical errors are misdiagnosis and delayed diagnosis, both of which can have very serious consequences.
The term misdiagnosis includes delayed diagnosis, failure to diagnose, and diagnosing a condition that a patient does not have. While any one of these errors can endanger the health and safety of a patient, an experienced medical malpractice lawyer will consider the following factors before recommending the best legal course of action to the patient:
- Was there an official doctor-patient relationship? If the medical professional agreed to accept responsibility for your care and provide treatment, it is likely that a relationship existed.
- Was the doctor negligent in any way? Care is considered negligent if it falls below the standard of care. In other words, if the care you received did not meet the standard of care that another doctor with similar training would have provided under the same circumstances, it is likely that the doctor acted negligently.
- Did the error cause your injuries? For the patient to recover damages via a legal claim, they must be able to prove that the misdiagnosis caused their illness or injury.
- Did damages result from the injuries? Medical malpractice lawsuits seek compensation for medical bills, lost wages, property damage, and pain and suffering.
Researchers from Johns Hopkins report that most medical errors represent a bigger, more systemic problem, including poorly coordinated care, fragmented insurance networks, lack of safety nets, and lack of accountability by other parties. Despite the number of fatalities caused by medical mistakes each year, it does not get the same attention or research funding as other diseases, like cancer and heart disease.
According to a Professor of Surgery at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, medical errors do not appear on the Centers for Disease Control’s list of top-ranked causes of fatality, so it does not obtain the funding it deserves. Additional research is necessary to address the problem and prevent medical errors, including misdiagnosis mistakes, from happening.
Baltimore Medical Malpractice Lawyers at LeViness, Tolzman & Hamilton Advocate for Victims of Medical Negligence
If you have been injured or became ill due to a medical misdiagnosis while under the care of a physician, do not hesitate to contact the Baltimore medical malpractice lawyers at LeViness, Tolzman & Hamilton. Doctors are human and capable of making mistakes, and when they do not meet the standard of care or misdiagnose a condition, it jeopardizes a patient’s health and safety. We are on your side and are committed to protecting your rights and securing the maximum financial compensation you deserve. To schedule a free consultation, call us today at 800-547-4LAW (4529) or contact us online.
Our offices are located in Baltimore, Columbia, Glen Burnie, and Towson, allowing us to represent medical malpractice victims in Maryland, including those in Anne Arundel County, Baltimore County, Carroll County, Harford County, Howard County, Montgomery County, Maryland’s Western Counties, Prince George’s County, Queen Anne’s County, Southern Maryland, and the Eastern Shore, as well as the communities of Catonsville, Essex, Halethorpe, Middle River, Rosedale, Gwynn Oak, Brooklandville, Dundalk, Pikesville, Nottingham, Windsor Mill, Lutherville, Timonium, Sparrows Point, Ridgewood, and Elkridge.y