There is no denying that medical professionals devote time and effort to their patients’ treatment. But they are also humans. Therefore, sometimes they make avoidable mistakes, leading patients to keep up with severe repercussions. Numbers reveal that medical malpractice is responsible for an average of 700 preventable deaths in a day in the United States. 

Let’s have a look at the most prevalent causes of medical malpractice: 

  1. Negligence During Childbirth  

The birth of a child is meant to be a joyful occasion. Particularly, this is a life-changing moment for mothers when they finally meet and hug their newborns. But childbirth does not always proceed as smoothly as the expectant mother would like. That is why millions of babies are born every year with childbirth injuries that could have been avoided. In addition, the neglect of medical professionals has been linked to serious problems such as brain damage and mental retardation. 

Following are the tell-tale causes that contribute to the childbirth injuries: 

  • Prolonged labor: If the attending physician cannot successfully deliver the baby within an appropriate period, childbirth injuries are inevitable. Extended labor puts the health of the infant at risk. For the sake of the baby’s health, a doctor may decide to perform an emergency cesarean section or use drugs to induce labor. 
  • Applying too much force:  Applying too much force results in complications like shoulder dystocia. Among other things, this medical condition could potentially paralyze the child’s hands or arms. 
  • Not identifying fetal distress: Symptoms of fetal distress often suggest that the newborn is suffering from an oxygen deficiency, which may eventually lead to cerebral palsy. Though cerebral palsy treatment options exist in abundance nowadays, the child may suffer long-term injuries. 
  1. Prescription Errors
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It is not uncommon for medical professionals to prescribe the incorrect prescription or the incorrect dosage. Unfortunately, most prescription errors occur before patients even receive their prescription medications. For instance, if a doctor fails to diagnose a patient’s problem appropriately, they might prescribe ineffective medications.  

Typically, prescription slip-ups have little to no consequences. But a small number of them result in catastrophic consequences, including death or severe injury. Sometimes the prescription is hard to read, so nurses get it wrong. Healthcare facilities can utilize modern-day robotics to fix this issue. Robots are less likely to make mistakes when performing repetitive errands like filling prescriptions.

  1. Misdiagnosis Or Delayed Diagnosis

In outpatient settings, misdiagnosis or delayed diagnosis is the most common cause of malpractice claims. The fundamental logic for incurred harm is that the patient has missed out on treatment options that could have prevented illness or fatality. Furthermore, a misdiagnosis may result in unnecessary treatment with potentially serious negative side effects.

  1. Surgical Errors

Around one-third of all lawsuits of medical malpractice are based on surgical errors. According to a well-documented report, surgeons in the United States indulge in over 4,000 preventable surgical errors every year. These errors are referred to as “never events” because they should not occur at any cost.

In no particular order, we are listing the top surgical errors below: 

  • Executing the wrong procedure: When you check into a hospital for a certain operation, you expect the attending physicians to carry out the necessary procedure and then discharge you from the facility. But what if the procedure is performed incorrectly? In that case, you will not only have to go through the initial treatment but also require additional treatment to get over any damage caused by the first one. 
  • Leaving a foreign object in the patient’s body: Surgeons may leave a surgical clamp, gauze, and scalpel within a patient’s body, resulting in substantial pain or infection. Such instances typically take place in a chaotic and unorganized operating room. 
  • Giving an excessive amount of anesthesia: Too much anesthesia could be deadly because it may starve the brain of oxygen. In addition, in some cases, a patient’s response to anesthesia can be troublesome. However, the patient’s family has the right to seek compensation if there is a genuine mistake by the medical staff. 
  1. Faulty Medical Equipment 
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If a piece of medical equipment breaks down at a critical stage, it could put the patient in danger. When medical tools fail to work as they should, the product’s manufacturers are responsible for injuries or fatalities. Medical professionals may also be held liable for not staying on top of the upkeep. Maintaining medical equipment falls under the domain of a healthcare provider. 

  1. Healthcare-Acquired Infections 

One out of every 31 hospital patients contracts a healthcare-acquired infection (HAI) every day. It can cause severe and perhaps fatal consequences. UTIs, pneumonia, surgical site infections, and bloodstream infections are the most common kinds of HAI. some prominent causes of HAI are as follows: 

  • Not meeting sanitization standards
  • Inadequate staffing 
  • Using contaminated medical equipment
  • Overpopulated facilities
  1. Failure To Get Consent

It is necessary to seek authorization from the patient before a medical expert can proceed with any care plan. Sadly, this is not always the case. For example, suppose your physician addresses your ailments against your will or fails to provide you with the information you need to make an informed decision. In that case, they should be held accountable for their actions. 

  1. Lack Of Medical Supervision

Patients do not always receive the appropriate level of supervision in healthcare facilities. For example, suppose a hospital is careless and does not adequately monitor the patient or substitutes medical students for an absent nurse. In that case, it may increase the risk of injuries. Thus, lack of supervision makes it to the list of leading medical malpractices.  

  1. Miscommunication Between Hospital Staff 

Nurses and doctors caring for patients as part of a multidisciplinary team need to maintain continuous communication. If a group of trained medical professionals does not collaborate effectively, the patient may sustain significant injuries. 

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A patient’s expectation while seeking medical treatment is to obtain the finest possible care. Everyone knows that doctors take the oath to provide only the highest quality medical care to their patients. As a result, no one ever thinks they will make mistakes or provide subpar care. But things do not turn out to be that way. The above-listed mishaps make up for the most common medical malpractices. 

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