Going to the emergency room can be a terrifying experience—even when everything goes well.
However, if a doctor or another medical professional makes a mistake in the emergency room, it can result in life-changing injuries.
Patients injured due to emergency room negligence can pursue a medical malpractice lawsuit against the providers responsible for their injuries.
At the New Mexico medical malpractice law firm of Poulos & Coates, LLP, our Las Cruces attorneys provide compassionate yet aggressive representation to victims of medical malpractice and their family members.
We can help you understand your rights and pursue a claim against the doctor or hospital responsible for your injuries.
What Does Negligence in the Emergency Room Look Like?
Emergency rooms are hectic places. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, emergency rooms saw more than 130 million patients in 2018.
That averages out to about 40 out of every 100 people in the United States visiting an emergency room. Inevitably, busy doctors are more likely to make an oversight that could seriously affect a patient’s health.
Some of the most common emergency room errors include:
- Delayed diagnosis,
- Delayed treatment,
- Dropping patients during transport,
- Failure to have specialists on duty or on-call,
- Failure to order the necessary medical testing or imaging,
- Medication errors,
- Preventable infections, and
- Surgical errors.
Of course, there are other types of emergency room negligence; these are just a few examples.
How Common Are Emergency Room Errors?
Emergency room errors are more common than most people realize. In fact, according to one study, over 52% of all “negligent adverse events” in hospitals occur in the emergency room.
A negligent adverse event is any event resulting in harm to a patient that was avoidable had the emergency room staff exercised the proper level of care.
Considering all the high-risk surgeries that occur elsewhere in the hospital, this certainly is a startling statistic.
Why Are There So Many Preventable Injuries in the Emergency Room?
There are a few reasons why emergency room errors are so common.
Perhaps the most significant factor is the sheer volume of patients that emergency rooms see every day.
However, other issues contributing to the high rate of emergency room negligence include understaffing and fatigue.
Emergency room physicians work long shifts—often over 12 hours. After being on their feet for so long, even the best doctors are more likely to make mistakes.
However, being busy isn’t an excuse to make a mistake that could affect the rest of a patient’s life.
Were You the Victim of Emergency Room Negligence?
If you or a loved one recently suffered new injuries or the worsening of pre-existing injuries due to emergency room malpractice, reach out to Poulos & Coates for immediate assistance.
At Poulos & Coates, our emergency room medical malpractice lawyers have more than 70 years of combined experience holding negligent doctors accountable.
Over this time, we’ve recovered significant compensation on behalf of countless clients, helping them move on with their lives after everything they’ve been through.