Hospital emergency rooms (ER) and emergency departments are fast-paced, hectic places where critically ill patients’ lives often depend on accurate and timely diagnoses and treatment made by doctors, nurses and other health care providers. Yet even highly skilled ER physicians and nurses can make errors with serious consequences if they are dealing with overflowing waiting rooms and have too few staff on hand to give patients adequate attention. Unfortunately, this situation is quite common in emergency rooms as anyone knows who has spent hours waiting to receive treatment. It’s the patients who suffer the harm when ER staff are rushed and overworked.
If you or a loved one was injured as a result of an emergency room error, the Colleran Firm is ready to help. We focus on representing victims of medical malpractice in Pennsylvania and New Jersey and our years of experience and proven record are reasons why you should contact us. We offer a free consultation where we will review your medical records and explain your legal options. If we find that emergency room negligence has occurred in your case, we will aggressively pursue compensation for your losses. To schedule a free consultation with a Philadelphia emergency room attorney, please contact us online.
Numerous errors occur in ERs every day. These errors happen because of insufficient staffing, poorly trained ER staff, fatigued doctors and nurses, a lack of sufficient hospital beds, a lack of proper tests, misread test results, communication lapses and systemic issues.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the number of emergency room visits increased by 44 percent in recent decades, while the number of emergency rooms declined by 10 percent. That has meant longer waiting times for patients to receive emergency medical care, and more pressure emergency room staffs to handle the increasing volume of patients.
While many emergency medicine errors go unnoticed, some have the potential to cause catastrophic injury or the death of a patient. These types of errors include:
Failure to admit a patient to the hospital
Delay in treatment
Failure to call in a specialist physician
Failure to monitor and respond to changes in a patient’s condition
It’s important to understand that not every medical error represents emergency room negligence. The question is whether the doctor or hospital emergency room staff failed to follow the recognized standard of care in providing treatment. Did the doctor or provider order the tests and follow the procedures that another doctor or health care provider in the community would do under similar circumstances? It’s question that requires a detailed analysis of the specific facts by a skilled medical malpractice attorney. We are committed to holding doctors and hospitals in Pennsylvania and New Jersey accountable when they make a preventable error that causes a patient lasting harm or disability.
Chest pain and abdominal pain are the most common reasons that people over age 14 visit hospital ERs. Hurrying to try to treat too many patients, emergency room doctors and staff may fail to diagnose signs of a heart attack, stroke, ruptured spleen, blood clot or aneurism.
Stroke is a leading cause of death and disability in the U.S. and ERs play a vital role in diagnosis of ischemic stroke. When someone has suffered a heart attack, stroke or developed an illness such as cancer, receiving an accurate and timely diagnosis is critical.
We know from experience with previous clients that there is a narrow window of time in which to treat an ischemic stroke or an aortic blockage and expect a good recovery. A delayed diagnosis of a patient with lung cancer or breast cancer can allow a disease to advance and reduce treatment options. We have represented the families of patients whose lives were cut short unnecessarily because of a misdiagnosis or delay in treatment.
ER physicians may mistake symptoms of a rarely seen condition for a more common ailment, delaying treatment of the right health condition. A seriously-ill patient may wait hours for treatment while their condition deteriorates to the point of endangering their life.
A doctor may prescribe the wrong type of medication to treat a patient’s condition. A harried ER nurse may administer an incorrect dosage of medicine or even the wrong medication. These are ER errors with serious and potentially life-threatening consequences.
Many families are left with more questions than answers after a terrible experience in a hospital ER. The ER doctor and hospital are unlikely to admit to you if they made an error and caused preventable harm. You put trust in the doctor and hospital staff, so after such an experience, you may be left with questions and conflicting emotions and unsure where to turn. You will need a trusted, knowledgeable emergency room malpractice attorney to conduct an independent investigation. We will have unbiased medical experts review your medical records to determine what really happened and whether an ER doctor or staff failed to follow the recognized standard of care.
The Colleran Firm, founded and led by James E. Colleran, Esq., represents victims of medical malpractice and emergency room negligence in Pennsylvania and New Jersey. Our law firm is composed of a talented team of skilled trial attorneys. We aggressively pursue compensation for individuals who have suffered harm through medical malpractice as well as family members in wrongful death cases. Focusing attention on a medical error often lead to changes in procedures and improvements in patient safety that prevent other patients from going through a similar experience.
If you or your love one has been harmed by emergency room malpractice, you may have a legal right to seek compensation. Our team of skilled trial attorneys will aggressively pursue compensation for your losses including medical bills, pain and suffering and other damages.