Although we hope that our doctors and other such medical professionals will treat us with care, most patients understand that medical malpractice can and does happen. Many, however, don’t realize just how common it may be.
According to one frequently-cited Johns Hopkins study, medical malpractice results in the deaths of more than 250,000 Americans every year. Other studies and research indicate this may be a very conservative estimate.
Medical malpractice may also be more common in some specializations and among certain types of doctors. Medical professionals with relatively high rates of malpractice include:
It’s easy to understand why surgeons are often the targets of medical malpractice claims or lawsuits. Surgery is difficult work, and a single error can result in major consequences for a patient.
We should be sympathetic to the fact that performing surgery isn’t easy. That said, we also shouldn’t allow surgeons to simply escape justice when they are unreasonably negligent.
Anesthesiologists play a critical role in surgical procedures. What some don’t know is that anesthesiology is very complex. It’s fairly easy for an anesthesiologist to make a mistake. When they do, patients may experience significant complications or even death.
Medical professionals specializing in women’s reproductive health also have a history of being the focus of medical malpractice claims. This is often due to the fact that their mistakes can result in harm to a baby. Additionally, those in this area of specialization may fail to properly diagnose such conditions as cervical cancer or ovarian cancer.
It’s worth noting that everything from anecdotal evidence to formal surveys indicate women may often struggle to convince doctors to take them seriously, finding that medical professionals are less dismissive of male patients’ concerns. Thus, medical malpractice may naturally be more common among doctors who primarily or exclusively work with female patients.
The emergency room is a setting in which medical malpractice tends to occur more frequently than in other departments. It’s likely easy to understand why. Quite simply, emergency departments are often overburdened. This results in an environment in which busy doctors, nurses, and others involved in patient care may be more prone to error.
Primary care doctors don’t necessarily engage in medical malpractice to a greater degree than other doctors. However, they do tend to be involved in the care of their patients to a greater extent than other medical professionals. Thus, it makes sense that primary care doctors may face a relatively high volume of medical malpractice claims and lawsuits.
None of this is meant to suggest that all medical professionals in these areas of specialization are negligent. Nor is it meant to imply that other medical professionals can’t engage in malpractice.
If you’ve experienced hardship because any doctor was negligent, you may be eligible to receive financial compensation for your medical bills, lost wages, and various other losses. Review your case with a lawyer for more information about your legal options. Honolulu medical malpractice attorney Jed Kurzban is prepared to offer the representation you deserve. Get started today by contacting our office online or calling us at 866-377-3676.