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Emergency Room Errors - Statistics, Liability & Prevention


It is estimated that more than 100 million people are treated in hospital emergency rooms every year in the United States. Because these visits are not planned, patients are not able to screen their treating physicians and other medical providers beforehand. A simple mistake could have devastating results. According to one study done by the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA®), more than 225,000 people die from medical malpractice each year. Our firm has represented hundreds of patients who allege to have suffered harm due to negligent or reckless physicians, nurses, pharmaceutical companies and medical device manufacturers. We understand that emergency room errors can have life-changing (or life ending) consequences, and will help you pursue justice from those responsible.

Common Types of Emergency Room Errors

Emergency room errors include:

  • Misdiagnosis or late diagnosis
  • Failure to recognize a heart attack, acute stroke, or acute appendicitis
  • Improper medication or wrong dosage
  • Failure to order correct tests
  • Misinterpretation of test results

Many hospital emergency room patients suffer serious and life-threatening conditions. Failure to properly diagnose and treat a patient can have fatal consequences. In addition, administering the wrong amount of medication can lead to an overdose or other serious health condition. Because emergency rooms are often chaotic, stressful and fast-paced, doctors and nurses must exercise a high degree of caution to prevent errors.

Who May Be Liable for an Emergency Room Error?

Emergency room personnel, including nursing staff and physicians, owe a duty of care to patients. Additionally, specialists such as radiologists often play a critical role. These medical providers are responsible to provide accurate diagnoses, tests and treatment to protect the health of patients. If medical providers breach their required duty of care and cause harm, they may be held liable in a medical malpractice lawsuit.

Evidence to support a medical malpractice claim may include witness statements, medical records, test results, radiology and other documentation. If a doctor or nurse acted negligently, you have the right to pursue compensation for medical bills, lost wages, pain and suffering, and other damages. Once we decide to investigate your case in detail, our Louisville medical malpractice attorney will conduct a detailed investigation, consult experts, determine who, if anyone, deviated from the required standard of care and is therefore liable, gather and preserve evidence, and aggressively pursue your case.

Prevention of Emergency Room Errors

Hospital emergency room errors are often caused by lack of communication, poorly equipped or understaffed facilities and poorly trained medical professionals. Clear communication is important to prevent an emergency room error. In addition, having functional equipment and machines can help patients receive the treatment they need. Doctors and nurses must have the necessary training and education to treat emergency room patients in a safe and effective manner.

Seek Justice with the Help of Our Louisville Medical Malpractice Lawyer

Emergency room errors are the third leading cause of death in the United States. At Brett H. Oppenheimer, PLLC, we provide aggressive representation to clients who have suffered injuries from negligent physicians. We will investigate the situation and work hard to protect your right to a settlement.

Contact our firm today to get started with a free consultation.

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