Most Americans will receive some sort of wrong diagnosis at least once in their life, according to a report issued by the Institute of Medicine. While not all cases of misdiagnosis lead to serious injury or death, there are still an alarming number of cases that do. Diagnostic errors can have a significant impact on a patient’s life, especially if that error is connected to a critical illness or a life-threatening condition.
Also, a misdiagnosis or failure to diagnose can become worse, thanks to the complexity of today’s healthcare system. It isn’t easy for doctors and researchers to gather information about medical errors – and not all hospitals or physicians are forthcoming with such data. Errors involving misdiagnosis and failure to diagnose are found well after the fact – sometimes, those errors occur because of the healthcare system itself, so it is not just one physician at-fault.
Sometimes, a medical error is just that: An error. Other times, a physician’s gross negligence and oversight leads to the error. Determining who is to blame is a complex process; sometimes, multiple parties can be found liable for a missed or delayed diagnosis.
One of the biggest causes of misdiagnosis is communication between the patient and physician. Patients can be proactive in their care, and possibly reduce the likelihood that they will experience a medical error in their lifetime, just by:
If your condition was misdiagnosed or delayed to the point that it caused you significant harm or pain and suffering, you may be entitled to compensation. You will need to have your case evaluated by a medical malpractice attorney first. Contact Berkowitz and Hanna LLC today to schedule a no-obligation case evaluation. Call us or contact us online to get started.