It has been revealed by the New York State Comptroller’s Office that the number of medical malpractice claims filed against New York City hospitals has increased since 2013. For the fiscal year 2013, there were 495 medical malpractice claims against New York City hospitals. In the fiscal year 2015 there were 521 claims.
Negligence on the part of a hospital can lead to serious injury or death. This negligence includes malpractice committed by doctors, nurses, nurse’s aides, physician’s assistants and technicians employed by the hospital. Types of hospital negligence include inadequate staffing, inadequate supervision, substandard care, unclean facilities, tainted instruments, and the failure to perform or properly interpret diagnostic tests.
Staffing issues are also a major factor in hospital malpractice. Many facilities are understaffed, resulting in problems including:
- Fatigue – physician error, doctor mistake, or nursing errors are more likely to occur when that provider has been working for 24 hours or more without rest in a hospital that is understaffed.
- Demand – in urban areas such as New York City, overcrowded emergency rooms, clinics, and hospitals are common. If the hospital is understaffed, patients may receive little attention and the conditions with ambiguous symptoms may be overlooked.
- Supervision and training – there may be more problems related to their employees. Thorough background checks on staff members may not be done. Consistent procedures may not be followed. There may be patient abuse or patients may be injured.
Regardless of how it occurs, it is inexcusable to place patients in harm’s way by providing them with inadequate or negligent care. Hospitals are required to adhere to certain policies and procedures so that they can ensure the health and well-being of their patients. Hospitals are liable for a patient’s injuries that result from the hospital’s negligence.
Unfortunately, hospital negligence is not rare and can have injurious or fatal results. For example, a patient could become seriously injured, or even die, due to a hospital’s or emergency room’s failure to diagnose a disease or fails to make appropriate medical specialist referrals. The medical professionals in hospitals do handle most birth and deliveries. While most are handled properly, medical negligence can still occur.
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