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A look at the common causes for emergency medical malpractice

New Mexico residents who are interested in issues related to hospital negligence and medical malpractice may wish to know the results of a study that looked at the prevalence of claims against emergency physicians. Issues in the diagnosis stage seem to be the greatest cause of patient injuries, according to the data.

In examining hundreds of claims against emergency physicians from 2007 to 2013, the researchers found that the most common claim against these doctors is a failure to diagnose the patient's illness correctly. While diagnostic claims made up 57 percent of allegations, others were prevalent as well. These included, in descending order of incidence, failure to properly manage treatment, failure to perform the treatment properly and not ordering the correct or necessary medication for the patient.

The researchers also investigated data on the reasons for these errors. They discovered that the greatest number of the misdiagnosis issues came from an inadequate assessment of the patient or a failure to use clinical information available at the time. Other factors in the doctors' errors included specific issues with the patients that led to delays in care, such as obesity, and errors in communication between both hospital staff and between the doctor and the patient and their families. Understaffing and workflow issues were also the cause of some physician errors.

All of these issues, including doctor negligence, understaffing and hospital neglect can lead to serious injuries for patients. In these cases, both the medical staff and the hospital themselves may be liable for these injuries and medical complications. An attorney may be helpful in bringing the appropriate legal action against them, which may lead to compensation for the injuries, including long-term care and pain and suffering.

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