Medical personnel must handle and maintain blood properly to minimize the risk of blood contamination. Often, the contamination is the result of a failure to follow procedures by personnel. The risk of bacterial infection transmitted by infusion is notably higher than the risk of a viral infection being transmitted through infusion. In some cases, infections caused by blood contamination constitutes actionable medical malpractice. If you were injured by blood contamination, you should consult the Syracuse medical malpractice attorneys of DeFrancisco & Falgiatano.Blood Contamination
Medical facilities must follow strict procedures and protocols to avoid blood contamination. Health care professionals, along with nurses, staff, and personnel should be trained in how to maintain and transfuse blood to avoid contamination. Blood contamination may be caused by a failure to properly sterilize surgical equipment, improper dialysis procedures, bacterial exposure, mislabeled samples, improper storage, improper donor screening, and surgical errors.Medical Malpractice
Medical malpractice occurs when a health care provider violates the professional standard of care, resulting in patient injuries or death. The professional standard of care is the degree of care that a reasonably competent health care provider in the same practice area would have used under the same or similar circumstances. Additionally, New York follows the locality rule under which the professional standard of care depends not only on a health care provider’s specialty, but also geographic location.
To show that a health care provider committed medical malpractice in Syracuse, your lawyer will need to prove: (1) the health care provider owed you a professional standard of care, (2) the provider departed from the professional standard of care, (3) the departure caused your injuries, and (4) actual damages. Doctors can be held accountable for malpractice. In some cases, so can hospitals.Is Your Blood Contamination Case Negligence or Medical Malpractice?
Whether your blood contamination claim sounds in negligence or medical malpractice has an impact on both the substance and timing of your claim. Different elements must be proven to establish these theories. There are prerequisites to medical malpractice claims in New York that don’t apply to claims brought under a theory of negligence. Additionally, the statute of limitations for negligence and medical malpractice differs.
Negligence occurs when there is a failure to behave with the level of care that someone of ordinary prudence would have exercised under the same circumstances. In one case, a court found that the three-year statute of limitations in New York Civil Practice Law & Rules section 214-c was appropriate when a hospital failed to adopt and prescribe proper procedures and regulations for blood collection by failing to adequately screen and test blood for contamination, such as HIV or AIDS. The court reasoned that the actions at issue weren’t linked to questions of medical competence or judgment, but the hospital’s independent duties as a blood collection carrier. The relevant question is whether the defendant’s acts or omissions have a substantial relationship to the provision of medical treatment by a licensed doctor. Although a hospital provides medical care, what must be proven is negligence rather than medical malpractice if the crux of the complaint isn’t that there was negligence in providing medical care to a particular patient, but the hospital’s failure to satisfy a different duty, such as serving as a blood collection center.Wrongful Death
If your loved one died as a result of blood contamination in New York and it’s possible to establish medical malpractice or negligence, you may be able to recover pecuniary losses arising out of the death. These can include funeral and burial expenses, along with lost earnings.Consult a Seasoned Syracuse Attorney
Blood contamination may result in devastating consequences. Patients may be seriously injured from contaminated blood or acquire a potentially fatal infection. If you believe you were harmed by blood contamination arising out of medical malpractice, you should consult the experienced lawyers of DeFrancisco & Falgiatano about whether you have a viable claim. We represent people in Rochester and Syracuse. We also represent clients in Upstate New York cities including Oswego, Lyons, Oneida, Cooperstown, Binghamton, Auburn, Canandaigua, Wampsville, Watertown, Ithaca, Utica, Elmira, Lowville and Herkimer. Call DeFrancisco & Falgiatano at 315-479-9000 or via our online form.