Emergency rooms provide potentially life-saving medical treatment to patients that are seriously ill or critically injured. According to experts, an estimated 145.6 million patients go to an ER each year. The majority of these patients seek treatment for an illness rather than an injury. Unfortunately, with overwhelmed medical staff and limited resources, ER medical errors are all too common. In fact, according to research an estimated 5-10% of all emergency room visits result in medical errors.
The most serious of these errors can result in or fail to prevent an otherwise preventable death. In these cases, the patient’s death is termed “wrongful” and his or her surviving loved ones may be able to file a wrongful death lawsuit against the medical provider and/or hospital. As an experienced Greenville, SC medical malpractice lawyer, Bobby Jones Law can help you recover the compensation that you deserve.
Common Emergency Room Errors Resulting in Death
ERs operate on a triage basis. With a triage system, a patient’s condition is prioritized based on the severity of his or her injury. This means that a patient that is assigned a high level of priority will be treated before a patient that is assigned a lower level of priority.
Misdiagnosis at the triage stage is one of the primary causes of ER medical malpractice that can result in the patient’s death. Other common serious ER medical errors include:
- • Medication errors. A provider prescribes or administers the wrong medication and/or the wrong dosage.
- Lack of medical history. ER staff is required to obtain the patient’s medical history. This includes important information such as the patient’s weight, age, current medications, and preexisting medical conditions. Failing to obtain this history can result in the physician prescribing a medication that the patient is allergic too or performing a procedure when it is not medically prudent to do so.
- Improper care. Similar to medical malpractice in any setting, a provider may fail to provide the patient with a reasonable standard of care. For example, failing to properly close and clean a wound resulting in a serious and deadly infection.
- Early discharge. This occurs when a patient is released before it is medically safe to do so. Once released the patient’s condition worsens and can result in death.
- Not monitoring the patient. An ER can be a busy place. Staff that is stretched thin may fail to properly monitor a patient with a serious medical condition contributing to his or her death.
Discuss Your Case with an Experienced Greenville, SC Medical Malpractice Lawyer
If you have lost a loved one due to medical malpractice in an emergency room, you have rights and remedies available to you under South Carolina law. Bobby Jones is an experienced and nationally recognized Greenville, SC medical malpractice lawyer that represents plaintiffs in wrongful death cases.
Bobby Jones Law serves clients throughout the state of South Carolina and is conveniently located in Greenville. Please contact our experienced and compassionate staff today for a FREE consultation.