Pocatellos is a fairly small town with modern healthcare facilities. Unlike over-crowded, understaffed hospitals in many big cities, most people receive excellent care in Idaho towns like Pocatello. However, no area is exempt from medical mistakes or negligence. Just as in the rest of the country there is a potential that a healthcare provider becomes negligent leading to a wrong diagnosis, inappropriate treatment, or surgical errors that leaves you with serious consequences, such as grueling pain, a lower quality of life, or even the loss of earning ability.
Without the aid of a skilled medical malpractice attorney, these errors could wind up taking a major toll on both your own life and the lives of those you care about. Litster Frost is here to help you pursue a case against a negligent healthcare provider or organization anywhere in Idaho.
Medical Malpractice: What Is It, and How Often Does it Occur?
Medical malpractice hinges on the concept of negligence – that is, acting in a careless manner or in a manner that deviates from the standard of care or the accepted practices and procedures of the medical community which are designed to prevent harm to patients. In a medical malpractice case, a patient must be injured in some way as a result of that negligent act.
To prove your case, your attorney will evidence to show not only that you were injured, but that the negligence of the doctor, hospital, or other healthcare provider caused or contributed to your injury. Medical malpractice cases look not just at the type of injury you or your loved one sustained, but also examine the short-term and long-term consequences and costs, including physical pain and suffering, medical costs, loss of wages, changes to your lifestyle, and emotional damages.
Medical malpractice cases happen more often than you may think. Hundreds of thousands of errors occur each year in the United States, with one study concluding that medical errors are now the third leading cause of death nationwide. Still, while medical errors can have tragic results, not every error necessarily constitutes medical malpractice.
Types of Medical Malpractice
Medical malpractices rears its ugly head in many forms. Your attorney can determine which type, or types, apply to your case. Some of the more common forms of malpractice include:
- Wrong Diagnosis or Failure to Diagnose
Misdiagnosis is the most common type of medical error, and while you might think misdiagnosis affects only difficult-to-diagnosis cases like blood clots, heart ailments or deep-seated cancers, you’d be wrong: Each year, many doctors misdiagnose relatively common medical problems as well. A misdiagnosis can result in a delay in appropriate care that can allow a condition to become much worse over time, or it may result in inappropriate – and often harmful – care being rendered, including unnecessary surgery or the use of dangerous prescription medications or other treatments.
- Pregnancy-Related or Birth-Related Injuries
Pregnancy should be an exciting time filled with joyful anticipation. Unfortunately, it’s also a time when a lot of things can go wrong, both during both the pregnancy and the birth process itself. Both the mother’s and the baby’s health and lives are at stake, and the negligence of a doctor, midwife, nurse or other provider can have devastating consequences. Often, a negligent act can lead to an issue like:
- Excessive bleeding or hemorrhage
- Placental abruption or other placenta issues
- Problems related to cesarean section deliveries
- Misuse of forceps or suction during delivery
- Prolonged labor or delay in performing a cesarean delivery
- Anesthesia-related injuries
- Injuries to the baby that occur during the birthing process or during labor
As with other types of medical problems, proving that the healthcare provider was negligent in providing some aspect of care is essential to determining whether a medical malpractice scenario exists. Not all birth- or pregnancy-related problems are associated with medical negligence, so working closely with a skilled medical malpractice attorney is an important part of determining if malpractice exists.
- Medication Errors
Nearly everyone needs to take medication at some point in their lives, and we rely on our healthcare providers to ensure our medications are both appropriate and necessary for the health issues we’re facing. Unfortunately, medical prescription errors are very common in the United States resulting in injury–and even death–for some patients. Medication errors can include prescribing an incorrect medication or prescribing the wrong dose of a medication, and they can also include dispensing errors that occur while you’re in the hospital. Sometimes, it’s the pharmacist who makes an error in filling a prescription. All these instances could be examples of medical malpractice, and they can all have major consequences for you or your loved ones.
- Surgical Errors
The Roland Smith case is a good example of a surgical error, but there are many other types of errors related to the surgeon, the tools and materials used during surgery, and the anesthesia and other medications that are prescribed during the procedure. Nerve damage, bleeding-related issues, performing the incorrect surgery, and leaving a foreign body like a sponge or instrument inside the patient are, unfortunately, all-too-common examples. Sometimes, an injury can occur when a patient is not secured or positioned properly on the operating table, or a patient can be dropped when being transferred from the operating table to the bed in recovery.
Protect yourself and Those You Care About-Call Our Office Today
Medical malpractice can have devastating and even life-threatening consequences. If you suspect a doctor or other medical care provider caused you injury, then it’s time to speak with a medical malpractice attorney. An experienced medical malpractice lawyer on the Litster Frost team can help determine if the issue you’ve experienced is a result of negligence, and can also help you take essential steps to protect your rights and receive the compensation you deserve for your medical costs, pain and suffering and other associated losses. The attorneys at Litster Frost’s Pocatello office are ready to help you make sure your rights are fully protected. Call the attorneys at Lister Frost at (208) 333-3330 and schedule your personal consultation to learn more about your rights today.