Medical Malpractice and Hospital Acquired Infections
When a person becomes seriously ill or injured, they often require urgent medical care, which may result in hospitalization. Hospitals should be a safe place to heal and recover, but they can be an ideal breeding grounds for germs. Too often, patients develop infections while they are in the hospital for treatment.
If medical neglect results in infection, the patient may have a medical malpractice case. The medical malpractice lawyers at Tawwater Law Firm can help individuals from Oklahoma City, OK, explore their right to financial compensation for losses stemming from medical malpractice resulting in a hospital acquired infection.
How Common Are Hospital Acquired Infections?
There are numerous safety protocols in place to protect hospital patients from germs, bacteria, and infection. Hospital rooms should be cleaned regularly, instruments should be sterilized, and PPE equipment should be worn around infectious patients. Despite these regulations and many others, numerous patients suffer from hospital acquired infections.
According to numbers reported by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 648,000 hospital patients acquired healthcare-associated infections during the year 2011. Hospital acquired infections threaten a patient’s health, compromise their recovery, and can lead to other catastrophic consequences. In the most serious cases, an infection can even result in death. The CDC reports that, in 2011, around 75,000 people died from healthcare-associated infections while hospitalized.
Medical Neglect That Can Result in Infections
Many cases of hospital acquired infections are the result of medical neglect, or medical malpractice. If a medical professional fails to provide the accepted standard of care, it puts a patient’s well-being at risk. Types of medical neglect that can lead to infection for Oklahoma City hospital patients include:
- Sharing medical equipment between patients
- Failure to properly clean or sterilize surgical equipment, medical devices, and more
- Neglect to thoroughly wash hands
- Misuse of antibiotics
- Poor communication between hospital staff
- Performing improper or unauthorized procedures
Is It Grounds for Medical Malpractice?
Proving that a hospital-acquired infection is the result of medical malpractice can be tricky because it is often difficult to pinpoint exactly when the infection developed. However, our Oklahoma City legal team works alongside medical experts to examine circumstances resulting in the infection so that we can prove medical malpractice for our clients.
We consider evidence such as medical records, hospital charts, witness testimony, and expert testimony. Our clients have grounds to pursue a medical malpractice lawsuit as long as we can demonstrate a few key factors:
- A medical provider failed to provide care that met up to accepted standards
- Medical neglect directly resulted in an infection
- The infection resulted in financial or non-financial damages for the patient
Medical Malpractice Damages
A hospital-acquired infection can result in significant damages for patients, including financial losses and non-financial losses. In a medical malpractice lawsuit, our lawyers will pursue compensation for any our client’s infection-related losses, which may include:
- Past and future medical expenses
- Lost wages
- Any loss of wage-earning potential
- Pain and suffering
If you developed an infection during a hospital stay, you may be due financial compensation for resulting losses. To discuss your situation with the medical malpractice lawyers at Tawwater Law Firm, send us a message at your earliest convenience, or call (405) 673-8021 to schedule a legal consultation.