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Emergency Room Mistakes

Working in an Arizona hospital emergency room is not for everyone. ER personnel must be able to make quick decisions on matters of life and death in an often fast-paced, chaotic, and stress-filled environment. So it is essential that hospitals make certain that they hire only doctors, nurses, and other staff who have demonstrated the ability to perform well and deliver a high standard of care under these demanding conditions. If hospital mistakes are made, if a patient is misdiagnosed, receives improper treatment, or is otherwise harmed by a medical error, they open themselves up to claims of medical malpractice. When this does happen, it is extremely important to contact a Phoenix emergency room errors lawyer.

When you must visit the emergency room, you have every right to expect the same high standard of care that you would expect from any doctor or healthcare professional. You expect that the proper tests and imaging will be ordered, the proper medications administered, and the correct diagnosis made. You should also expect to be informed as to what tests and procedures have been done and be given detailed follow-up instructions. If necessary, you should be admitted to the hospital for further care.

Lack of High ER Standards in Arizona Means Lives Lost

Unfortunately, there is much discrepancy among hospital emergency departments in Arizona, as well as the rest of the United States, with some offering consistently better care and fewer errors than others. The medical consumer reporting firm HealthGrades did a study of the nation’s emergency rooms and their patient outcomes. Based on the results of the study, HealthGrades determined that if every hospital emergency room performed up to the standards of those that received the Emergency Medicine Excellence designation, 170,856 more people might have survived during the two-year period of the study.

Of course, many people arriving at an emergency room are seriously ill or injured, and not every outcome is favorable, even if ER personnel do everything right. A bad outcome doesn’t mean malpractice has been committed. To be considered medical malpractice, the hospital, doctor, or staff must have deviated from the standard of care expected of any reasonably competent member of the medical profession in the same specialty in the same region.

The Most Common ER Errors

The good news is that the Phoenix-Prescott metropolitan area made the cut of the top ten U.S. cities with the lowest patient mortality rate for those admitted to the hospital through the emergency room. But even in the best hospitals, carelessness and negligence may occur.The most frequent emergency room errors include:

  • Diagnostic errors (between 37 and 55 percent of all emergency room errors), including misjudging symptoms, delayed diagnosis, and incorrect diagnosis by a non-physician
  • Triage errors
  • Failure to obtain a thorough medical history
  • Overlooking essential information given when taking medical history (for example a drug allergy)
  • Failing to order appropriate tests
  • Misreading or misinterpreting of test findings
  • Medication errors
  • Failing to notify patients of test findings
  • Failing to provide follow-up instructions to patient

Consequences of An Emergency Room Mistake

The common emergency room mistakes mentioned have a wide range of adverse effects on a patient, and most of these are a result of human error. Diagnostic errors prove to be the most common of all, and a simple mistake could put the patient’s life at risk. Patients could have sever allergic reactions to medication if charts aren’t carefully analyzed and overdosing patients does happen. Furthermore, pregnant women are at higher risk when they take a trip to the emergency room. Any faulty procedures could not only effect the mother but also the child she is carrying. Frequently, birth injuries in Phoenix are a result of an emergency room error, whether it be misuse of tools or other triage errors.

Quality Medical Malpractice Representation in Phoenix, Arizona

A Phoenix medical malpractice lawyer at Knapp & Roberts can provide experienced, diligent legal counsel if you need representation. Our attorneys have a long track record of successfully representing patients who have been harmed by emergency room malpractice and the families of those who died wrongfully as the result of medical negligence. At our client-centered law practice, we provide compassionate and personalized service to those whom we represent. We return phone calls, provide straightforward and honest answers to your questions, and keep you up-to-date on your case status.

Free Case Analysis

At Knapp & Roberts, a Phoenix emergency room errors lawyer will meet with you and perform a free analysis of your situation to determine if you have a viable claim for medical malpractice. We maintain close relationships with respected medical experts who assist us in reviewing your records and identifying what went wrong, when it went wrong, and why it went wrong. If we take your case, we will incur all the upfront expenses, and you will only pay us if we win money to compensate you for your damages.

Time to file a claim is limited by law, so don’t delay. Call Knapp & Roberts today.

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The personal injury attorneys in Phoenix, Arizona, at Knapp & Roberts have the compassion and trial lawyer skills to tell your story to a jury. We will get to know you and your family so that we can help the jury understand what has happened to you and your family and how it has changed your lives. Obtain the compensation necessary for the injuries and losses you have suffered.