Medical Malpractice and Personal Injury Law Blog

Death by Mistake

Posted by Briggs Bedigian | Jan 10, 2017 | 0 Comments

Medical malpractice can be scary enough when it involves a significant injury caused by a physician that the patient trusted. The concept is nothing short of terrifying when a medical professional's negligence causes a death.

While horrifying to think about, deaths at the hands of a trained medical physicians are more common than one may think. In fact, it has been reported that medical errors in hospitals and other health care facilities are the third-leading cause of death in the United States with 251,000 lives lost each year. That number trails only heart disease and cancer.

An example of such a case is currently in the beginning stages of litigation in California where a woman has filed a lawsuit based upon the claim that doctors at Alta Bates Summit Medical Center caused the death of her father.

The woman's father originally went to the medical center for the treatment of an infection and sepsis as originally diagnosed by his doctor, Dr. Carl Watanabe. However, Dr. Watanabe's diagnosis was allegedly incorrect and the staff at the hospital also failed to make a proper diagnosis. The plaintiff claims that the alleged misdiagnosis and delayed treatment of her father led to his death.

The plaintiff claims that it was possible for a trained medical professional to properly diagnose her father and that lack of treatment and misdiagnosis breached the medical standard of care necessary for her father. Further, the plaintiff claims that her father was denied treatment at the emergency room for more than eight hours.

The way the system is currently constructed, errors in the health care field remain more possible than they should. While physicians and health care providers are humans and make mistakes, there are safeguards that can be put in place to limit those mistakes while lessening repercussions. For example, bar codes could be placed on each piece of surgical equipment so a medical team could account for every tool at the end of a surgery. This would make it almost impossible for a surgeon to accidentally leave a medical tool inside of a patient. Investing in this type of technology could help prevent errors of all sizes but it remains to be seen whether hospitals will take it upon themselves to take on the financial obligation.

Medical malpractice can have devastating effects that last a lifetime. If you have been injured by a physician's neglect, attorneys Charles Gilman and Briggs Bedigian will work to get you the full compensation to which you are entitled. Call 800-529-6162 today or contact them online for a free case evaluation. They handle cases in Maryland, Pennsylvania, and Washington, D.C.

About the Author

Briggs Bedigian

H. Briggs Bedigian (“Briggs”) is a founding partner of Gilman & Bedigian, LLC.  Prior to forming Gilman & Bedigian, LLC, Briggs was a partner at Wais, Vogelstein and Bedigian, LLC, where he was the head of the firm's litigation practice.  Briggs' legal practice is focused on representing clients involved in medical malpractice and catastrophic personal injury cases. 

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