Medical negligence is one of the main causes of death in the United States. While America’s healthcare industry is one of the world’s finest, mistakes do happen, and negligent doctors do find work. For this reason, it is absolutely essential that you protect yourself against medical negligence.
By going out of your way to protect yourself, you minimise your chances of falling victim to medical negligence. In addition, you set yourself up so that you can deal with it if it does happen to you.
This article will present several ways that patients can protect themselves against medical negligence:
Hire A Lawyer
Hiring a lawyer on retainer isn’t a preventative measure, but rather a solution for if you ever do fall victim to medical negligence. Hiring a lawyer on retainer means paying them monthly, and if you ever need them, they represent you free of charge. If you have received a medical misdiagnosis, then you need to hire a lawyer who will fight for you to receive compensation. You can also receive compensation if a doctor made a mistake when performing surgery on you or in prescribing you medication.
Lawyers will either approach your doctor’s insurance company or take them to court. Either way, they will handle your compensation claim from start to finish, allowing you to focus on your recovery.
One of the best ways to protect yourself from medical malpractice is to avoid arrogant doctors like the plague. It’s often arrogant doctors that are responsible for most malpractice cases because instead of relying on logic, they make decisions based upon arrogance and personal feeling.
It’s very easy to spot an arrogant doctor, because they refuse to question themselves, and don’t take kindly to criticism. If your doctor appears arrogant, then report them to the manager of your local surgery or hospital. Another obvious sign you are dealing with an arrogant doctor is if they prescribe medication without asking you about your problems, acting as if they know it all. You should always be allowed to explain your issues to your doctor before they act.
One way of ensuring that you never fall into the hands of an underqualified and dangerous doctor is to ensure that they have sufficient medical qualifications. Most doctor’s surgeries will not employ doctors who don’t have university-level qualifications. However, if you deal with private practice doctors, then there’s no guarantee that they have relevant qualifications.
Another thing to look out for is licensing. If a doctor doesn’t have a license, then you should under no circumstances let them anywhere near you. Licenses are issued to doctors who are qualified and safe for patients to work with.
Another thing worth paying attention to is the doctor’s area of expertise. If a doctor is a specialist chiropractor, that doesn’t mean that they are qualified to make judgments about your eye health. If you aren’t certain that a doctor is qualified in the area of healthcare that they are practising, ask them to present their degrees or qualification certificates to you.
If you visit a doctor who simply isn’t qualified and doesn’t have any experience in the area that you are discussing with them, mistakes are going to happen, there’s absolutely no way that they can’t.
Any doctor that you deal with has to be insured. If they aren’t insured, then you won’t be able to get compensation from them easily if they misdiagnose you. Medical insurance is a requirement for practising doctors in all U.S states. It might not be in other countries, however. If you go out of the United States for healthcare treatment, then bear this in mind.
Most doctors will publish their insurer’s information and their certificates on their website or inside their surgery. If you ask them for confirmation that they are insured, most will happily provide you with this information.
In the digital era, one of the easiest ways to determine whether a doctor is qualified or not is to read their reviews online. Even doctor’s surgeries have review pages on Google and Trust Pilot. If you see that, across the board, reviews are bad, then you should avoid dealing with them.
However, just because a doctor’s reviews are good that doesn’t mean that you can trust them. You still need to factor in all of the other points made in this article, so that you can be confident the doctor is responsible, qualified, and capable of looking after you.
Medical negligence is a killer. Thankfully, it is possible to avoid it by following the steps outlined in this article. If you do fall victim to it, then you need to make a compensation claim, which a lawyer can help you with.