In a number of our posts, we have noted how medical malpractice is one of the leading causes of death in hospitals. Indeed, there is much that can be done on the physician’s side that can prevent such deaths (especially through misdiagnoses), but patients can also protect themselves from doctors who deviate from established protocols or who do not take adequate time to properly diagnose a condition.
This post will identify a few steps patients can take to stand up for themselves and avoid the potential for medical malpractice.
Educate yourself – In the past, knowledge on medical conditions used to be scarce. Only a trip to the library or having a personal relationship with a doctor would help in learning about your condition. Now, a quick search on the Internet can bring you enough knowledge to help you understand what you need to know.
Ask questions – After educating yourself, asking questions is also helpful. But more importantly, getting complete answers, especially information about the risks associated with a particular condition or the benefits of a risky procedure should be your focus.
Get additional opinions - You may have heard about professional athletes getting second opinions. If you are unsure about a particular course of action or procedure, you should get a second opinion as well. You may learn that you previous doctor may have skipped a step or failed to review a particular report that affected how you are diagnosed.
Ultimately, if you have questions about whether you are a victim of medical malpractice, an experienced attorney can advise you.