Failure To Diagnose: A Medical Malpractice Dilemma

A decade ago if I told you 1 out of every 20 patients had been misdiagnosed by their treating doctor you might question that statistic. Although it would be accurate. And that number accounted for close to 12 million mistakes that patients had to either accept or challenge in court.

Fast forward to the present and those statistics have gone up exponentially. Add in the pandemic and all the protocols that have been put into place before a patient can even enter a building and you would think mistakes would decrease, but unfortunately that’s not the case.

In most hospital settings doctors typically have just 10 minutes with a patient. That’s not enough time to assess a patient, determine what is or isn’t wrong with them and provide a course of treatment that is appropriate for their ailment. In most cases the doctor is rushed, and the patient doesn’t have enough time to tell the doctor everything that they believe is necessary for the doctor to prescribe a remedy. So the patient accepts what the doctor says as truth and hopes for the best.

That’s not how it should be. But that’s how it is. Doctors know they need to slow down and spend more time with patients. Yet, they don’t. And over the last 30 years misdiagnoses were the number one source of malpractice claim payouts.

Here’s the top 3 malpractice allegations by percentage…

#1 – 31.8% Failure to Diagnose

#2 – 26.9% Surgical Errors and Mistakes

#3 – 24.5% Medication Errors

Misdiagnosing a patient is the same as saying failure to diagnose. The doctor failed to adequately diagnose the ailment or injury and thus put the patient at risk for further complications.

Physicians and hospitals rarely admit mistakes. Even in cases that seem to be clear cut, you can expect a defendant to fight any claim of wrongdoing. We have successfully handled many medical malpractice claims ranging from birth injuries and brain injuries to failure to diagnose cancer to nursing home abuse. We also have handled medication dosage injuries, and infectious disease claims. Medical malpractice can also apply to nurses, dentists, osteopaths, physical therapy facilities and others providing health care services. The challenges these cases present are many and varied and our team will work aggressively to overcome them. We also have experts at our disposal to help get to the truth of what happened. Our experienced injury attorneys are skilled at working to secure favorable settlements and jury awards if settlement is not possible.

Negligence by a medical professional could be the result of an error in diagnosis, treatment or illness management. Negligence is based on a failure to follow accepted standards of practice. For example, a hospital may provide improper care in not properly assessing a fall risk resulting in a patient fall. Or, there may be an error in dispensing medications, or a failure to maintain sanitation or providing below standard nursing care.

The law involving medical malpractice is designed to protect patients’ rights to compensation if they are injured as the result of negligence. But malpractice suits are rarely simple, and they are costly to fight. Sometimes the time and money needed to pursue compensation for an injury that is minor or heals quickly should not be spent. If you believe you have a medical malpractice claim, it is important to consult with an attorney who can help you determine whether your claim should be pursued.

The Law Offices of David W. Holub is a personal injury law firm located in Merrillville, Indiana, focused on providing efficient and effective client-centered representation. Our mission is to provide quality legal representation, which includes an uncompromising pursuit of our client’s legal interests, while being accessible and attentive to our clients during times of personal challenge.

The firm concentrates in personal injury cases of all types, medical malpractice, and wrongful death litigation. We work tirelessly to serve each client aggressively and with empathy, to communicate regularly and clearly, and to obtain prompt and favorable results, while adhering to the highest standards of integrity. Our team considers it a high honor to be called upon to serve our clients whom we often come to regard as our friends.

If you’ve been injured and are looking for answers we invite you to make use of the information on our website, and to call our law office at (219) 736-9700 to schedule a time to talk directly to us and see firsthand if we are the right law firm for you.

If you would like to learn more about personal injury law, we encourage you to listen to our Personal Injury Primer Podcast where we break down the law into simple terms, provide legal tips, and discuss topics related to personal injury law. And read “Fighting For Truth: A Trial Lawyer’s Insight Into What It Takes To Win” an entertaining and enlightening book pulling readers into the courtroom giving them a glimpse of the legal process and what it takes to win at trial.

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