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Monitoring treatment is one of the many obligations that doctors, nurses, and other medical professionals have when providing a reasonable quality of care to a patient. But when your doctor fails to properly monitor treatment, and you suffer an injury or harm, he or she may be committing medical malpractice.

What does ‘failure to monitor treatment’ mean?

But what do we actually mean what we say “failure to monitor treatment”? Our Philadelphia failure to monitor treatment attorney at The Weitz Firm, LLC, explains that this type of medical malpractice occurs when a healthcare provider fails to do any or all of the following:

  • Watching a patient carefully;
  • Keeping track of the patient’s medical condition;
  • Observing the patient for signs of distress, discomfort, pain, or worsening of the condition;
  • Responding to any signs of health issues in a timely manner;
  • Keeping track of the patient’s oxygen levels, heart rate, body temperature, pulse and other vital indicators; and
  • Monitoring a patient before and after a procedure (e.g. surgery or other invasive treatment).

All these elements make up what is considered in legal terms as a “reasonable standard of care.” These are the duties of reasonably competent doctors, physicians, nurses, and other members of hospital staff. Breaching any of these duties may be considered “medical malpractice” in Pennsylvania.

In most cases, patients require legal help from an experienced failure to monitor treatment attorney in Philadelphia or elsewhere in Pennsylvania to sue for medical malpractice. Your lawyer will help you find a medical expert witness to determine whether or not doctors failed to adequately monitor your health.

How doctors fail to monitor patients

There are many situations in the healthcare setting where medical professionals are legally required to monitor their patients:

  • After administering anesthesia. When anesthesia has been given to a patient, the anesthesiologist, nurse, and other medical professionals have a duty to monitor the patient’s vital signs to check for any adverse reaction or health issues;
  • During a surgery. When a patient is undergoing a surgery or any other invasive treatment, the hospital staff have a duty to monitor the patient’s heart rate, body temperature, pulse, oxygen levels and other vitals signs to make sure that no complications arise during the procedure;
  • After the surgery. Hospital staff also have a duty to monitor patients for post-surgical infections or other complications;
  • During labor and delivery. Obstetrician and other members of hospital staff have a duty to monitor both mother and fetus during the labor process;
  • Prescription drugs for elderly patients. Elderly patients react differently to various prescription drugs, which is why hospital personnel have a duty to monitor high-risk patients for any complications;
  • During medical treatment. When a patient is receiving medical treatment, doctors, physicians, and other members of hospital staff have a duty to ensure that the treatment is going smoothly and with no adverse effects;
  • Antipsychotic medication. Doctors have a duty to carefully monitor a patient’s need for antipsychotic medication when the patient is on antidepressants to prevent the risk of overdose;
  • Reviewing the patient’s medical history. Regardless of the reason why the patient has been put under observation in a hospital or healthcare setting, doctors have a duty to review the patient’s medical history to ensure that no complications arise;
  • Following-up with the patient. Failure to follow-up with a patient may result in misunderstandings and preventable complications;
  • Repeating testing when symptoms persist or are not clear. If symptoms persist or testing shows unclear results, healthcare providers have a duty to repeat testing; and
  • Discharging patients from the hospital earlier than expected. When this happens, medical professionals have a duty to carefully monitor the patient.

Needless to say, failure to monitor treatment can result in serious complications or even death, which can be prevented if doctors are committed to providing the highest standard of patient care. Speak to our Philadelphia failure to monitor treatment lawyer at The Weitz Firm, LLC, to determine whether or not you are eligible to sue for medical malpractice. Call at 267-587-6240 to get a free consultation.

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