As an individual is rushing to the emergency room for treatment, one of the last things he or she wants to think about is medical negligence. Unfortunately, it happens. Many medical negligence cases that arise from the emergency room deal with the doctor's failure to make a proper diagnosis.
Other areas of medical negligence include:
- The hospital's failure to have and properly maintain adequate radiology equipment.
- The ambulance personnel's failure to transport the patient to a facility qualified or equipped to handle the trauma.
- The emergency room doctor's failure to call for an immediate radiology consultation or other appropriate consultations.
- The radiologist's failure to require good-quality x-rays of the patient.
Most often, the doctor or other professional must make a clinical evaluation as quickly as possible. Although standards of care can vary, all health care professionals must use the knowledge and skill that a reasonable clinician would use under similar circumstances. The diagnosis should be based on a complete history, a thorough physical examination, and all appropriate laboratory and radiological tests. The emergency room doctor may not be able to arrive at a specific diagnosis but he or she is certainly expected to be able to rule out potentially life-threatening and other serious conditions that demand early treatment, consultation, and referral to an appropriate specialist.
If you or a loved one has been seriously injured as the result of medical negligence, please contact Alley, Clark & Greiwe for a free consultation.