Medical errors happen every day. A recent study by Johns Hopkins reports that medical mistakes are now the third most frequent cause of death, right behind heart disease and cancer. That means more than 250,000 people die from human error rather than an illness or injury.
These errors can include:
- Surgical and anesthesia errors
- Birth injuries
- Negligence in patient care
Medical malpractice doesn’t always lead to a fatality. Many people are permanently injured, disfigured, or otherwise harmed by a malpractice incident. But if you discover that you need to take action, you shouldn’t do so by yourself.
It’s important to take care of your health. If you’re concerned that your doctor has committed an error, considering finding a new doctor to correct that mistake. The new doctor will collect your medical records and focus on taking care of you. A misdiagnosis from the first doctor will also be reviewed by the second, and the treatment changed once a correct diagnosis is made.
Start A Tracking Log Of The Aftermath
After a medical error or misdiagnosis, you may be living with side effects, pain, or other problems caused by the malpractice. Start and continue a journal or other written record of everything involved with the malpractice, and explain how it has impacted your life, such as missed work, treatments, after-effects, etc. This will be an important part of your medical malpractice case, so be sure to write in it frequently (daily if possible), be accurate, and include as much detail as you can.
You should also include names of all of the individuals involved in your healthcare, including any doctors, nurses, and others.
Gather Medical Records
This is also an important part of your case. These records will contain information about your condition, medications prescribed, and other pertinent information.
Request any and all medical records immediately, and prior to filing your case to prevent alteration of your medical records. Do not mention legal action. While it is illegal, some doctors will “update” a medical record if they believe they may be sued for malpractice in the future.
Once you’ve begun gathering documents and keeping a tracking log, it’s time to find a medical malpractice attorney in West Virginia who can help you with your claim. You’ll want to interview attorneys who have experience handling these types of claims.
Another important professional will be a medical expert who can examine your records and substantiate your claim. This is generally a doctor who practices the same field of medicine as the doctor you’re filing a claim against in order to establish and prove your claim. Your attorney may be able to provide the names of one or more medical experts for your case.
What You Shouldn’t Do
If you are considering a lawsuit, there are a few things to avoid while you discuss your case with a medical malpractice attorney:
- Do not discuss your case on social media, as your case could be compromised
- Do not disclose your intention to anyone within the healthcare facility, including any healthcare providers (doctors, nurses, etc.)
- If you are contacted by the defendant’s insurance company, refer them to your attorney. Do not answer or agree to answer any questions (outside of disclosing the name and number of your attorney.)
Need Help With Medical Malpractice?
Call The Love Law Firm today at (304) 344-5683 and schedule your appointment with one of our medical malpractice attorneys. We’ll discuss your case with you, explain your options and what to expect. Our contingency fee arrangement means you won’t owe a fee if we don’t win your case.