You have heard the expression, “babies are not born with instruction books”, right? Believe it or not, the ability to properly raise a child is not an attribute with which we humans are born with. So how do we do it? We learn from others and we learn from past and present mistakes.
With that said, some needs required by children should be entrusted to professionals. Specifically, a child’s medical needs should be entrusted to an experienced pediatrician. These specialized medical professionals will ensure that children get: annual physicals; required vaccinations; proper diagnoses of diseases, injuries, and illnesses; advice on healthy eating and exercise; and all other things medical that which relate to a minor’s medical care. All the parent has to do is bring the child to the doctor and follow the doctor’s instructions.
Parents trust that pediatricians give competent and accurate care to children. The experienced Kingston medical malpractice attorney knows that such care is not always delivered. In fact nearly a third of all pediatricians will be sued on a medical malpractice allegation at least once during their careers.
Pediatricians are trained on how to timely and accurately diagnose childhood illnesses and diseases. These doctors are even given instruction on the proper procedures and protocols that will aid such endeavors. Nonetheless, missed diagnoses in the pediatric setting are the most common mistakes that pediatricians make. Specifically, meningitis is commonly misdiagnosed, as are other ailments. Delayed diagnosis often means delayed recovery and a lower likelihood of recovery at all.
Appendicitis is also commonly misdiagnosed, especially so with infants. As you know, appendicitis left untreated can be fatal. In addition to appendicitis, pneumonia has been misdiagnosed in children; this too can be deadly.
Outside of malpractice as a result of misdiagnosis, medication related errors also lead to malpractice claims. The medication may have been ordered wrongly, such as in ordering the wrong dosage and or ordering the wrong medication. The medication can be administered negligently as well; injecting drug ‘B’ into the child but thinking that drug ‘A’ was being injected.
The bottom line is that doctors must provide competent and adequate pediatric care to children. Medical standards govern pediatric care and so long as those standards exist, the pediatrician can be held liable if there is a deviation from those standards that hurt the child.
These standards will vary from place to place and from case to case. Therefore, proving medical malpractice at trial requires special tactics. For example, expert witnesses will need to testify as to medical standards, deviations there from, and as to the actual cause of the child’s injuries. This being the case, defending a pediatric medical malpractice claim is costlier as compared to other lawsuits.
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.