Hospital Medical Malpractice: How to Stay Protected

By October 21, 2013Blog, Medical Malpractice

medical malpracticeMedical malpractice is a serious threat to the well-being of hospitals everywhere. In fact, “In 2012, over $3 billion was spent in medical malpractice payouts, averaging one payout every 43 minutes, reported Forbes. Despite hospital employees’ best efforts to be cautious and careful as they provide patient treatment, additional protection is needed from medical malpractice lawsuits. If you are unfamiliar with the liabilities associated with hospital medical malpractice suits, as it’s definitely to your advantage to arm yourself with knowledge in this area.

Hospital Medical Malpractice 101

Medical Malpractice Fact #1 – The hospital is liable for the actions of its employees.

As a hospital, it is your responsibility to take ownership of the actions of your employees. The hospital is liable for the behavior — whether good or bad — of their employees. It is important to draw a distinction between the varying degrees of bad results, though. Although unideal results may be viewed as “bad” by a patient, there isn’t always a correlation between undesired results and grounds for a medical malpractice lawsuit.

However, hospitals are at risk for medical malpractice when an adverse effect of medical treatment results from the negligence of a hospital employee. Even debatable medical malpractice claims must be backed by an industry expert, which serves as a way to protect the rights of both patients and hospital employees.

Medical Malpractice Fact #2 – Doctors may or may not be hospital employees.

Some doctors perform their duties in a hospital as independent contractors, which means that they do not work for the hospital and, as such, patients can only sue the practicing doctor, not the hospital. However, hospitals are, at times, liable for the actions of independent contractors.

When the hospital does not make it clear to the patient that the doctor treating him or her is an independent contractor, they run the risk of incurring the burden of the non-employee’s negligence. If the hospital is aware of the doctor’s incompetence and continues to let them practice medicine in their facilities, that institution is also at-risk for medical malpractice charges. The solution? The best way to avoid these circumstantial forms of medical malpractice is by taking preventative action.

Protect Yourself From Hospital Medical Malpractice.

Even the best hospitals sometimes become mixed up in medical malpractice lawsuits. In the event that you face medical malpractice, the best way to protect yourself is with a good defense.

For information about our hospital malpractice defense services, contact Gutglass, Erickson, Bonville and Larson Law Firm of Milwaukee, WI, at (414) 273-1144 today.

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