When a person visits a physician for a health issue, he or she expects to be treated with extreme care and examined thoroughly so that the underlying cause of the disease or condition could be uncovered and a proper treatment be started. A doctor examines the patient and makes a diagnosis based on his or her symptoms and medical history. At times this diagnosis goes wrong and an incorrect treatment or medication is prescribed to the patient that either serves to aggravate the condition or causes other health problems and concerns. This is known as misdiagnosis. Another catastrophe that happens inside hospitals and health care facilities is a delay in treatment, which can sometimes prove to be fatal.
Misdiagnosis and Delay Negligence
Such cases of negligence fall under misdiagnosis and delay negligence and are part of medical negligence for which the victim or their family members become eligible to file a claim against the doctor, physician, nurse or whoever is responsible. This claim is meant to provide justice to the sufferer and to bring the matter to light so that other similar patients could be saved from this misfortune. Usually general physicians as well as dentists and eye specialists are trained and experienced in their respective fields and such cases of negligence are very rare. However, despite their determination and commitment to their profession, mishaps do occur and people do suffer as a consequence of carelessness or inattentiveness on part of the doctor, surgeon, nurse or technician.
Conditions Included in Misdiagnosis Negligence
While misdiagnosis is unacceptable in any disease or condition, there are certain disorders for which a wrong diagnosis or delay in treatment can be life threatening. Some of these include; appendicitis, VDT or deep vein thrombosis, heart attack, infections, spinal abscess, stroke, meningitis, and cancer. Some people may wish to file a medical negligence claim if they think there has been a misdiagnosis performed by the doctor for an NET (Ear, Nose, Throat) disorder. Some cases fall under ophthalmology and others are included in the field of medicine known as orthopaedic.
You or a loved one may have suffered a birth injury for which you want to file a claim; this type of a negligence claim falls under birth injury and pregnancy claim. If the condition for which a misdiagnosis was made by the doctor belongs to spinal injury, then you would file a spinal injury claim. Infections, particularly hospital born infections like MR SA and C-diff, are to be diagnosed early and treated accordingly. If a doctor fails to do so, he or she is responsible for the consequences.
Similarly, tuberculosis is a condition for which a delay in treatment is totally unacceptable. If there is a bacterial infection, a proper antibiotic medicine has to be prescribed by the doctor. There should not be any delay in getting a blood test done in order to see what kind of infection it is that is causing the fever or other symptoms. If a wrong medicine is given, the patient may experience a decline in his or her quality of life, not to mention the disease is not cured. Sometimes prolonged use of certain medications causes complications like depression, anxiety, sleeplessness, lack of appetite, liver problems, and stomach upset. All these situations can become legal cases that fall under misdiagnosis and delay negligence.
Why File a Claim?
Even a small error on part of the doctor can cost you huge amount of money particularly if you have no health insurance coverage. And if you have been a victim of misdiagnosis and wrong treatment, the expenses can go sky high. Not to mention that this type of medical negligence puts you or a loved one on risk of developing a health complication or aggravating the condition you’re already suffering from.
It is therefore important to understand that you have a right to file a medical negligence claim not only to receive some sort of compensation for the loss you bear but also to expose this carelessness so that other patients could be saved. Another benefit of bringing a claim is to make the hospital staff improve their clinical standards and hire more competent and more experienced physicians and surgeons so that such cases could be controlled.