Tuscaloosa Medical Malpractice Lawyers
Protecting Alabama patients injured by doctors
Your doctor, surgeon or other healthcare professional should be the person you trust most with your health. You expect them, and pay them, to treat your illnesses and conditions. If you end up sicker than when you started – or lose a loved one – because of a doctor’s negligence, unfortunately you’re not alone.
The Tuscaloosa medical malpractice attorneys at Mezrano Law Firm are skilled in these types of cases, and have the specific experience it takes for a favorable outcome. We’ll work with you to seek the maximum compensation available for your injuries and losses, and ensure the negligent parties are held responsible. Talk to us today.
What is medical malpractice?
Throughout our state and the country, medical professionals are both expected and legally obligated to provide patients a certain standard of care. Essentially, the rule is that medical personnel must provide treatment that’s consistent with the general standards in their field of medicine in the same geographic area. And if they fail, falling below those acceptable standards and their patient suffers harm because of that failure, they can be held liable.
Medical malpractice isn’t just a simple mistake or a bad side effect. It’s your doctor’s failure to provide reasonable care that results in harm. Medical malpractice occurs when:
- There was a patient/physician relationship
- The physician failed to provide medical care in accordance with Alabama’s standard of medical care
- That breach of care resulted in harm to the patient
Examples of malpractice and negligence can include failure to diagnose, errors in diagnosis, errors in treatment, improper management of a condition, or mistakes during a procedure. To show that malpractice occurred, the patient must be able to show a direct link between the physician’s negligence and their injury. And, that injury must have resulted in harm, losses or damages to the patient – like lost income, pain or disability.
Examples of Tuscaloosa medical malpractice
Malpractice can happen in a variety of medical situations, during just about any stage of a patient’s treatment and with any variety and type of medical personnel. This can include doctors, nurses, surgeons, dentists, anesthesiologists, hospital staff, pharmacists and more.
Common types of medical malpractice we often see in our practice include:
- Failure to obtain patient information. One of the most important parts of your treatment is the beginning – when the doctor gathers your information. If your doctor or nurse fails to obtain the proper information, they can put your health at serious risk. Patient information can include informed consent, medical history, allergies, and patient concerns or questions.
- Anesthesia errors. Even small anesthesia errors can cause brain damage or death. Negligence with anesthesia can include giving the patient too much or too little, failing to monitor vital signs or improperly intubating a patient.
- Medication errors. Prescription errors can put a patient’s life at risk. Common prescription mistakes include dosage errors, incorrect medication, dangerous combinations or allergic interactions.
- Misdiagnosis. We rely on our doctors to diagnose our illnesses. However, misdiagnosis can encompass failure to diagnose, misdiagnosis, delayed diagnosis and misinterpreting or ignoring test results.
- Surgical errors. Mistakes during surgery can include things like operating on the wrong body part, damaging tissues or organs around the surgical site, operating with unsanitary tools or cosmetic surgery negligence.
If you or a loved one were the victim of any type of negligence or malpractice, our Tuscaloosa attorneys can talk to you about your rights.
Is my Tuscaloosa injury medical malpractice?
Medical malpractice can be a complicated field of law, and often it can be confusing as to what constitutes malpractice and what doesn’t. Not every medical error is malpractice. Unfortunately, just because your condition didn’t improve, or you didn’t respond to treatment, it doesn’t mean your doctor necessarily committed malpractice. Some conditions are simply untreatable, or some patients don’t respond to some treatments.
You may undergo a procedure that goes without complication but you’re unhappy with the results. It’s unlikely in this case your surgeon committed malpractice – this occurs only when your doctor provides negligent, reckless medical care that results in injury and losses. If you’re unsure as to whether or not your injury was caused by malpractice or negligence, a seasoned lawyer can offer guidance.
Tuscaloosa area hospitals and medical malpractice risks
In a recent study, Johns Hopkins University estimated that over 250,000 deaths per year in the United States are due to medical negligence. This makes medical errors the third leading cause of death in the country. Further, even more patients suffer serious injuries that aren’t included in these statistics. All medical personnel should be held accountable if they contribute to harming a patient due to carelessness.
A patient safety advocacy organization called The Leapfrog Group keeps a current ranking of hospital safety around the country. Their ratings include data on safety records, surgical errors and infection rates.
A search for Tuscaloosa hospitals brings up the following:
- Northport Medical Center, Northport, AL: Grade C
- DCH Regional Medical Center, Tuscaloosa, AL: Grade C
- Medical West Hospital Authority, Bessemer, AL: Grade C
What is informed consent?
Many medical treatments and procedures come with benefits and risks. They can treat a condition but also cause side effects that may cause a patient to want to weigh those pros and cons. However, the only way you, as a patient, can make that kind of decision is to be informed about all aspects of the medical procedure.
This is called informed consent, and a doctor is required to provide you with certain information before performing any procedure or treatment. If they don’t, and you suffer harm, they may be liable for medical malpractice. If you’re unaware and uninformed of certain risks or benefits and undergo a procedure, you could suffer additional or worsened injury.
Your doctor should provide you with the following for informed consent:
- Proper diagnosis of your condition or illness
- Recommended course of treatment
- Likely prognosis if you forgo procedure or treatment
- Any alternative treatments, along with comparable risks and benefits
Tenacious Tuscaloosa medical malpractice lawyers
If you believe you were injured or harmed due to medical malpractice, the attorneys at Mezrano Law Firm can protect your rights. We put our decades of experience with medical negligence claims to work for you, holding the responsible parties accountable and seeking the maximum financial compensation for your losses. Call us today at 205-206-6300 or fill out our contact form to set up a consultation at our Tuscaloosa office.