Medical negligence is not a new concept. It is a concept that unfortunately has plagued the United States healthcare system for decades. What is a new concept, however, is the alarming rate at which deaths are caused by medical negligence. New research indicates that deaths related to medical negligence are much more common than previous estimates have suggested.
In this post, the Houston medical malpractice attorneys at MedMalFirm.com review what new research suggests about medical negligence. If you have questions or concerns about healthcare and your legal rights, contact us directly to learn more.
Research Shows Increase in Deaths Caused by Medical Negligence
According to a study published in the Journal of Patient Safety, old estimates of less than 100,000 annual deaths by medical negligence in the U.S. were modest at best. In fact, new research indicates that the annual number of deaths more likely exceeds 400,000. These deaths include medical negligence on the part of doctors, nurses, hospitals, and other healthcare providers and staff.
The startling total number of annual deaths attributed to medical negligence further pales in comparison to the estimated number of injuries causing serious harm, which may be 10-20 times greater than the total number of deaths. Researchers now are calling the prevalence of preventable medical errors an “epidemic” plaguing the U.S. Some of the most recent statistics indicate the following:
- Every week across the U.S., it is estimated that 40 serious surgical errors occur
- New research indicates that medical errors are now the third-leading cause of death in the U.S., or one-sixth of annual U.S. deaths
- Medical errors cost U.S. consumers billions of dollars, while federal and state guidelines limit physician liability and place maximum award amounts on patient lawsuits
These statistics only show a glimpse at the devastation caused by medical negligence. Victims and their families are often left in turmoil, unsure of how to recover physically and financially.
Death Caused by Medical Negligence Should Not go Unreported
Many patients and their families are afraid or overwhelmed by the process of filing a medical malpractice claim. While it is true that the law has strict guidelines about filing medical malpractice claims, and the process can be complex, it should not be ignored. Medical errors and medical negligence are extremely serious concerns for patients all across the U.S. It is extremely important that medical negligence is reported in order for authorities to investigate and possibly prevent further injuries or loss of life. Reporting such errors is also important for patients and their families who want to pursue legal action, such as filing a medical malpractice lawsuit.
If you suspect that you or a loved one has fallen victim to medical negligence, do not hesitate to contact a skilled medical malpractice attorney for guidance. As a patient, you have the right to healthcare that is of high quality and in accordance with the standards of care. Though the process can be scary, you are not alone. With the help of a skilled attorney, you don’t have to be afraid of standing up for your legal rights.
Contact MedMalFirm.com to learn more about your legal rights and how we can help you take a stand against medical negligence. We offer every client a free consultation, so don’t wait to get started. Fill out our online form or call us at 877-887-4850.