As any parent can attest, there is nothing worse than when your child is sick or hurt. Unless the situation is an emergency, most parents will bring their child to the pediatrician and depend on that doctor to make the right diagnosis and treatment, so their child gets better.
But what happens if the pediatrician fails to make the right diagnosis or the treatment the child receives makes their condition worse or causes them harm? What legal recourse do parents have? A medical malpractice attorney can protect the child and their parent’s rights and recommend whatever legal recourse the family may have. To learn more, call a law office today to set up a confidential consultation. In the meantime, the following is a brief overview.
According to national statistics, more than 30 percent of all pediatricians in this country are named in medical malpractice lawsuits at least once in their career. Pediatric malpractice lawsuits are often the most expensive for accused doctors to defend because they involve children and the losses families suffer can be so devastating.
Some of the most common types of pediatric malpractice accusations include the following conditions:
- Meningitis: National data shows that the most frequently cited condition in pediatric malpractice lawsuits is the misdiagnosis of meningitis or the late diagnosis of meningitis. This can occur if the doctor misreads the child’s symptoms. If treatment is delayed or not given at all, the medical condition of the child can quickly deteriorate. The injuries the child suffers are often irreversible and can even be fatal.
- Appendicitis: Thirty percent of infants with appendicitis are misdiagnosed. This is especially more common in female infants because pediatricians often misdiagnose the symptoms as a urinary tract infection. If appendicitis is not diagnosed in time, the appendix can burst, spreading infection throughout the body, potentially causing serious medical issues that can be fatal.
- Medication: More than 5 percent of pediatric malpractice cases involve medication errors. Although many people may think that most medication errors are caused by pharmacists, statistics show that almost 70 percent of medication errors are caused by doctors. These errors can occur during transcribing, ordering, dispensing, or administrating.
In a pediatric malpractice lawsuit, the malpractice attorney must prove that the pediatrician was in fact negligent and that that negligence caused the child harm. Proving negligence involves showing the doctor did not meet the standard of care that he or she is legally held to. This can be done by presenting medical records, offering expert medical testimony about what other doctors would do in similar cases. An attorney may also use witness testimony to verify the doctor’s actions and how those actions caused a breach in the standard of care owed the child.
If your child was a victim of pediatric malpractice, contact a lawyer today to schedule a consultation with a medical malpractice attorney. They will work diligently to get your child the financial justice they deserve.