Emergency Room Errors

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Medical personnel regularly make quick decisions in order to save lives. This is especially true in emergency rooms, which are chaotic and confusing to people who don’t work in them. As an emergency room and critical care nurse, I have years of experience in this environment, as well as the errors which doctors and nurses can make within it. I chose to become an attorney in part because of the errors I watched being made and the way hospitals and doctors tried to cover them up, all at the expense of patients’ health and wellbeing.

What are the most common emergency room errors?

Overcrowding, inadequate funding and staffing, and other factors can lead to errors that mean patients are not admitted, diagnosed, and cared for properly. Common emergency room errors include:

  • EMT and paramedic neglect
  • Misdiagnosis
  • Delayed diagnosis
  • Failure to diagnose
  • Surgical errors
  • Unnecessary tests and procedures
  • Infections
  • Anesthesia malpractice

Can you sue an ER for misdiagnosis or another type of error?

Yes! All healthcare providers must follow the safety rules that have been put in place to prevent harm and protect us all. As a licensed RN and former emergency room nurse, I am very familiar with the standard of care required to keep patients and families safe, as I followed those safety rules in providing care to my patients.

What is the most misdiagnosed ER procedure?

Misdiagnosis can be deadly, though it often affects patients in less severe ways. Just about anything you go to the emergency room for can be misdiagnosed, including heart attacks, strokes, broken bones, high blood pressure, and appendicitis.

In emergency room error cases, the issue is not the misdiagnosis itself, but whether that error caused harm to the patient. For instance, did a delay or error in diagnosing lead to a heart attack or stroke? Did it result in an aneurism or internal bleeding? Did a simple bone fracture misdiagnosed as a strain become a more complicated and painful break? As your emergency room error attorney, I would ensure the full, harmful consequences of the error are made clear so you will receive the compensation you deserve.

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Emergency Room Errors FAQS

How do you prove misdiagnosis?

In an emergency room error case, I as your attorney must use medical records, interviews with witnesses, and the testimony of medical professionals with expertise in your injuries or condition to prove 4 things. All 4 must be proven.

  1. A relationship existed between the healthcare professional and the patient. (The healthcare professional was providing and/or responsible for the care to the patient: the duty of care.)
  2. The medical professional was negligent. (Through action or inaction, the medical professional did not follow the standard of care [safety rules] in caring for the patient: the breach of the duty of care.)
  3. The medical professional’s negligence caused the injury to the patient (causation).
  4. The patient suffered actual injuries as a result of the negligence (damages).

In Georgia, we not only have to prove that negligence/malpractice occurred, but that gross negligence occurred. Gross negligence means serious, even deliberate carelessness. As an emergency room and critical care nurse as well as an experienced attorney, I can quickly assess the truthfulness in healthcare providers’ stories and find the contradictions and violations of the safety rules revealed in the nursing and medical documentation.

When should you hire an emergency room error attorney?

In Georgia, the statute of limitations on an emergency room errors lawsuit is 2 years after the date of the incident. Although there are exceptions, it’s important to connect with an experienced, compassionate emergency room error attorney like me as soon as possible.

Dellacona Law Firm offers a free consultation to learn the unique circumstances surrounding your case and to advise you of your legal options. Please call us 478-477-9000. I would be honored to speak to you.

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Tracey L. Dellacona

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