There aren’t many positives to being in the hospital. You’re away from home for an extended period of time, you don’t feel well, and sometimes you might even be in a lot of pain. Your stay or treatment can only be made worse by medical negligence. Whatever your condition, if you suspect that you are the victim of medical malpractice or negligence, you should take action right away.
This might seem like a daunting or scary task. Many of our clients are worried their doctors will refuse to treat them, or their medical insurance fees will go up. However, this is simply not the case. As a patient, you have the right to know exactly what is happening with your treatment, and you have the right to quality, fair treatment. Even though it might seem like a big task to tackle, here are 3 simple steps you can take to investigate your possible medical malpractice case.
- Document the suspected malpractice – If you think you’re being treated wrongly, poorly, or unfairly, document everything that’s happening. Make sure you get copies of your tests, bloodwork, any lab results and doctors notes. Get the names of your health care providers, the nurses and doctors who tended to you, and make sure you know exactly what procedures or surgeries you had, and the outcomes. The more you have documented, the better able you will be to defend your case.
- Question your caregivers – As a patient, you have the right to know exactly what is going on for every step of your procedure and following care. Ask questions about your treatment, and don’t be afraid to get second opinions. Make sure you know exactly what your injury is, and what your projected outcome will be. Try not to come off as upset or harass your health care providers, you’re just trying to gather as much information as possible at this point. The more information you can get, the better, and you’re more likely to receive legitimate, helpful answers if you don’t seem confrontational.
- Request a hospital investigation – If your condition or injury is serious, you might consider asking for a hospital investigation. Usually, the hospital won’t share or publicize the results of their investigation, so it might not benefit you the way you’d like in a malpractice case, but it will raise awareness about your case, and could get you an explanation from the hospital’s risk manager.
Once you’ve gathered as much information as possible, it might be time to call a lawyer. There are those who proceed with a medical malpractice claim on their own, but it can be very difficult to succeed without an experienced medical malpractice lawyer. Many hospitals have a team of lawyers who handle all their potential medical malpractice cases, and will attempt to keep your claim as quiet as possible. A seasoned malpractice lawyer will know exactly how to handle your case, will know your state’s requirements and deadlines, and will be able to guide you through what can be a long and grueling legal process.
If you suspect you’ve been a victim of medical malpractice, call the Epstein Law Firm at 773-522-7000 right away. As always, your first consultation is free, and with our decades of experience, we’ll do everything we can to ensure your rights are protected.
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