On behalf of The Weitz Firm, LLC on Saturday, November 24, 2018 Posted in Failure to Diagnose.
We want to bring you a study that has been released by the Pennsylvania Patient Safety Authority, a government agency that seeks to improve patient care through the state. In a recent paper published, they looked at identifying and learning from diagnosing mistakes and how to improve patient outcomes.
The report used an online database to look at 1,212 reports, 138 of which were listed as diagnostic process failure events. The study found that the main problems with diagnosis revolved around:
- Failure in testing (68.1%)
- Surgical care (21%)
- Follow up and monitoring (13%)
We want to point out that these results come from a limited sampling of patient reports and represent only Pennsylvania, but they do tell us that diagnostic mistakes are a major problem.
Do you know where to turn if you have been misdiagnosed by a healthcare professional?
When you need a Philadelphia failure to diagnose attorney, you can turn to the Weitz Firm for help.
What Can Happen
When you think of medical errors, your mind probably jumps to surgical mistakes or infections, but Johns Hopkins researchers tell us that diagnostic errors accounted for the largest fraction of medical malpractice claims.
The authors of the study tell us that, “This is more evidence that diagnostic errors could easily be the biggest patient safety and medical malpractice problem in the United States.
So, what are diagnostic mistakes? What do they look like?
They can take for of a diagnosis that is missed altogether, wrong, or delayed and discovered later. When they happen, they can lead to treatment being delayed or never even occurring. They almost certainly will result in a worsened patient condition.
We know that misdiagnoses can occur due to doctors and nurses being overworked. We often see this in busy emergency rooms that are understaffed and must see many patients at a time. Because of this, healthcare staff may fail to perform some necessary tests, even if a patient’s symptoms indicate them.
We also know that many healthcare professionals are overworked. If a doctor, PA, or nurse practitioner is exhausted, they may not read a test properly.
A diagnosis that is correct and gets a patient the care they need will lead to a better outcome and likely a lower cost of care. A missed or delayed diagnosis can lead to patient harm, an increased cost of care, or even patient death.
What You Can Do Now
If you or a loved one have suffered after a misdiagnosis from a healthcare professional, please seek legal assistance. At the Weitz Firm, we want to help you get through this difficult time. Our qualified and experienced team will have your back and work towards securing the compensation you need. This can include:
- Coverage for your medical expenses and lost income
- Punitive damages against a healthcare professional or organization
- Pain and suffering damages