Archive for the ‘malpractice claims’ tag

Diagnostic Error: Number One Reason for Medical Malpractice Claims

October 20th, 2014 at 7:00 am

diagnostic error, misdiagnosis, permanent disabilities, Westport medical malpractice attorney, malpractice claimsA study conducted by researchers at John Hopkins University School of Medicine reveals that the most dangerous and costly mistakes made by doctors are diagnostic errors. According to the study, more than 160,000 people die in the United States each year because of physician misdiagnosis.

A diagnostic error can hamper the treatment of a patient’s condition and can cause serious injury or even death.

The research team examined more than 350,000 paid-out malpractice claims which had occurred between 1986 through 2010. They obtained the information from the National Practitioner Data Bank. The majority of the claims paid outX—28.6 percent—were due to misdiagnosis or failure to diagnose on the part of physicians. These claims typically resulted in extreme harm to the patient.

These claims were also the highest paid out claims and accounted for 35 percent of the total amount of medical malpractice claims paid. The payout of diagnostic error claims totaled almost $40 billion.

There were 69 percent of outpatient diagnostic error claims and 31 inpatient claims. There were more deaths that occurred for the inpatient claims.

The majority of diagnostic errors analyzed in the study were classified as failed diagnosis, with misdiagnosis errors coming in second. Errors involving neurological diagnosis were the most common.

The head of the research team, Dr. David E. Newman-Toker, an associate professor of neurology at Johns Hopkins University, estimates that diagnostic errors occur in almost 15 percent of patients on their initial visit to a doctor for a new medical issue.

Dr. Newman-Toker said of his team’s findings, “Overall, diagnostic errors have been under appreciated and under-recognized because they’re difficult to measure and keep track of owing to the frequent gap between the time the error occurs and when it’s detected. These are frequent problems that have played second fiddle to medical and surgical errors, which are evident more immediately.”

If you have suffered permanent disabilities or illness due to a diagnostic error, you may be entitled to compensation. Contact an experienced Westport medical malpractice attorney to discuss your legal options.

Surgical Errors Affect Thousands of Patients Each Year

July 9th, 2014 at 2:36 pm

Connecticut attorney, Connecticut medial malpractice, Connecticut medical malpractice lawyer, malpractice claims, medical malpractice, medical malpractice claim, negligence, personal injury, surgery, Westport medical malpractice attorney, surgical errorsSurgical errors are more common in the U.S. than one may think. In 1999, the Institute of Medicine published a report stating how just less than 100,000 people in the U.S. died every year from medical mistakes. However, according to a report issued by the Journal of Patient Safety and as reported by, that number is now estimated between 210,000 and 440,00 patients each year.

The estimate includes patients who suffer any type of preventable harm such as misdiagnosis, surgical error, and patient mix-up. notes how this “would make medical errors the third-leading cause of death in America,” third only to cancer and heart disease (the second and first leading cause of death in the U.S., respectively). Surgical errors are often the most serious of medical mistakes, because they are often irreversible mistakes that result in death.

An article in Medical News Today states how events that should never occur during surgery are known in the industry as “never events,” but these events occur far more often than never. Findings published in Surgery (as reported by Medical News Today) report more than 4,000 “never-events” happening each year in the U.S. And between 1990 and 2010, there were more than 80,000 of these across the country.

Examples of surgical error include extremely severe and identifiable mistakes such as a surgeon leaving a tool inside a patient’s body. By some estimates this happens about 39 times a week. Other surgical errors include a doctor operating on a wrong body part, or performing the wrong surgery. This happens less often, but still at a staggering estimate of 20 times each week. Malpractice claims arising from incidents of surgical error have cost the medical industry more than $1.3 billion between 1990 and 2010, according to Medical News Today.

Submitting a medical malpractice claim can be a long and arduous process. If you suspect that you have been a victim of medical malpractice or surgical error in Connecticut, the most important first step is to seek the counsel of a malpractice attorney. Contact a Westport medical malpractice attorney for a free initial consultation today.

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