First responders and emergency room staff hold unique positions within the medical field. First responders are EMTs, firefighters, etc. whom are the initial professionals that which respond to a call for medical help. We all know the types of professionals that staff emergency rooms.
Their positions are unique because these medical professionals do not know the patient, the patient’s medical history is unknown, nor do the first responders know what the patients are allergic to. Since first responders are expected to act without this information, they are not held to the normal rules of medical malpractice. With that said, some unique instances can cause these professionals to be held liable and the astute medical malpractice attorney in the Hudson Valley regions of New York will know how to analyze the issue.
The experienced Kingston, New York emergency room medical malpractice attorney also knows that emergency room doctors and nurses are not afforded such leniency and are held to the same medical malpractice rules as are medical professionals acting outside of an emergency setting.
This does not mean that the care provided by an emergency room doctor will be compared to the care provided by a general practitioner in the regular office. This would be an unfair comparison to use in order to prove a medical malpractice claim. Establishing medical malpractice involves comparing the allegedly negligent doctor’s actions to another doctor faced with the same circumstances.
For example, a patient claims that an emergency room physician made a negligent mistake. One could then look into how another emergency room physician would have treated that patient. If the doctor used as a comparison would not have made the error that was made, than perhaps the original treating doctor was negligent.
Can the hospital where the patient received emergency care be sued, or is just the doctor on the hook? Hospitals are employers and they hire doctors to staff the emergency room; therefore, the hospital can be sued by the injured patient. The normal rules that hold employers accountable for the wrongful acts of employees will apply.
This makes sense because emergency room patients do not chose the emergency room doctor; the patient is utilizing the services of the emergency room in general. It also makes sense because as an employer, the hospital should make sure that employees have the skill necessary to properly treat patients. The hospital should also make sure that policies and procedures are in place so that patients are treated in accordance with the standards of the medical profession. Therefore, even though the doctor and or nurse made the mistake, the hospital can be the party that ends up compensating the victim.
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.