Archive for the ‘patient operation’ tag

Overlapping Surgeries and Medical Malpractice Risk

November 11th, 2015 at 7:00 am

overlapping surgeries, Westport Medical Malpractice AttorneyFor most people who are facing surgery, we put our trust in the surgeon that will be performing the operation. We trust that he or she, as well as the rest of the medical staff, will put all of their focus on us—the patient—as we lay unconscious on the operating table, and do what it is they are supposed to do. We expect our surgeon to be present during the procedure. We do not expect that at the same time they are supposed to be operating on us, they are also operating on another patient in another operating room. Another patient who most likely has the same expectations we do. Yet, that is exactly what is happening in some of the most renowned medical centers in the country.

According to a recent Boston Globe Spotlight investigation, there are sometimes concurrent surgeries taking place at Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH). This means that while a surgeon has a patient booked in one operating room, he or she has an overlapping procedure booked, with another patient in another operating room, at the same time.

The hospital claims that when this happens, the surgeon is present during the “most important aspects” of the surgery and the patient is never at risk. Hospital administrators say that this is sometimes necessary in order to allow more patients access to surgeons who are in high demand. They also say that it gives in-training surgeons “hands-on” experience.

There is much debate on whether or not the hospital claims are valid, and there have been malpractice suits filed by patients who say they were injured because of overlapping surgeries. However, what may be even more disturbing is that the hospitals are not required to inform a patient that while his or her surgeon is supposed to operating on them, their surgeon may actually be in the room next door operating on another patient.

For example, at MGH, the only notification a patient is required to receive is contained in the consent form he or she signs, which states, “other medical professionals may perform some aspects” of the operation or procedure they are undergoing. Patient advocates say that the warning is not nearly enough and patients have a right to be informed of the overlapping scheduling.

If you have suffered an injury or illness from a medical procedure, please contact an experienced Westport medical malpractice attorney today to find out what legal recourse you may have against the physician and/or medical facility for your pain and loss.


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