Patients rely on and trust medical professionals to keep them healthy. Indeed, doctors may want nothing but good health for their patients. None the less, errors occur which cause harm that may have been preventable. The old adage, no news is good news, does not apply when patients are sick and their doctor either failed to properly diagnose the patient, or there was no diagnosis at all.
It is not hard to imagine the impact of not being timely diagnosed with breast cancer, lung cancer, cardiac disease, appendicitis, or even diabetes. A failure to properly diagnose any of these diseases could very well cause death.
Medical professionals are trained to follow certain procedures and protocols when treating patients. For example, if a female patient complains of a lump on her breast, the doctor is expected to follow up with a certain standard of care.
The standard of care expected from a medical professional will depend upon the specialty in which the doctor practices and the geographic location in which the doctor works. Simply, doctors and other medical professionals have a duty to treat their patients according to the standard of care within their community.
If there is a relationship between the doctor and patient, then the doctor is under a duty to follow the appropriate standard of care. If the doctor breached this duty, then he/she could be liable for any harm that you have suffered, provided that the doctor’s failure deprived you of adequate care and that you have suffered actual harm.
The type of damages that you receive are based on two broad categories; first, compensatory damages; second; punitive damages. Compensatory damages are awarded to compensate a person for an actual loss, such as money spent on additional doctors’ visits, prescriptions, lost wages, and loss of potential income. Punitive damages are not meant to compensate the injured party for harm, but rather, this type of damages serves to punish the doctor for his misdeeds and to deter future medical malpractice.
Medical misdiagnosis occurs in every community and injured patients may need to consult an experienced medical malpractice attorney in order to properly evaluate whether or not the medical professional committed professional negligence.
Diabetes, cancer, depression, asthma, headaches, lupus, fibromyalgia, fatigue, are all common afflictions that go misdiagnosed or even are not diagnosed at all.
But what do you think? I would love to hear from you! Leave a comment or I also welcome your phone call on my toll-free cell at 1-866-889-6882 or you can drop me an e-mail at [email protected] You are always welcome to request my FREE book, The Seven Deadly Mistakes of Malpractice Victims, at the home page of my website at www.protectingpatientrights.com.