A 2004 study of Canadian hospital safety which analyzed patient charts in a representative sample of hospitals in all provinces provides alarming facts. Nearly 70,000 patients suffer from preventable serious injury due to wrong treatment, negligence and medical errors annually. Another study conducted in the last decade revealed that nearly 23,000 Canadians die due to avoidable “adverse events” in hospitals annually. Keeping these facts in mind, if you or a loved one has been a victim of hospital injuries or errors, contact a personal injury lawyer immediately to understand and safeguard your rights. The lack of transparency in the health care system, paucity of research studies, patient awareness and a health-care environment dominated by traditional values and attitudes are some of the reasons why such incidents continue to occur and remain unreported. Victims of hospital injuries are entitled to compensation and they should find a personal injury attorney as soon as possible.
Types of Hospital Injuries
Many Canadian hospitals have followed the United States and European practice of compiling a list of “Never Events” that hospitals must abide by. These are events that should never take place in a hospital. Medical errors or hospital injuries are preventable events caused by the fault or negligence of someone. They include mis-diagnosis, failure to diagnose, wrong treatment/medication, hospital infections, etc.
Typical hospital injuries include:
• Surgery on the wrong part
• Mislabeled biopsy
• Wrong blood type in transfusion
• Wrong tissue implant
• Wrong donor egg or sperm in IVF
• Foreign object left in patient post-surgery
• Improper sterilization of equipment leading to infections/death
• Failure to check for known allergies and adverse reactions
• Patient death due to wrong medication
• Falls and injuries in hospital
• Improper treatment methods by inexperienced staff
• Child abduction from hospital
• Wrong baby discharged to parents
The most common injury in a hospital is a fall from a bed or chair, or a slip and fall accident on a slippery floor. The safety of patients is the responsibility of a hospital and it has a duty to ensure that all safety norms are followed. Our experienced personal injury lawyer can assist you with filing the appropriate charges in time.
Why Falls and Injuries Occur
Emergency departments, casualty wards, labor and surgical wards and operation theaters are areas where there is a high level of stress for doctors and nursing staff. Falls are one of the most common accidents that occur among in-patients in hospital, though such accidents can happen anywhere on the hospital grounds and the liability remains the same.
They are usually caused by:
• Not taking the age and condition of the patient into account
• Poor understanding of the patient’s medical condition and debility
• Leaving patients unattended while transferring from one unit to another
• Lack of communication between units
• Patient being heavily medicated and groggy
• Poor lighting, cluttered corridors and lack of adequate hand-rails and signs
• Poor maintenance of the premises: slippery flooring in showers, lack of drainage etc
• Lack of proper instructions while patient is left unattended in X-ray rooms or labs
• Poor designing of systems and processes
• Lack of proper competency and training
Some hospitals attempt to correct these aspects by using more restraints, special furniture, monitoring devices etc but ultimately, the most effective way to reduce hospital injuries is through proper communication, constant attendance and vigilance. These can be investigated by personal injury lawyers.
Apart from patients, hospital staff are also vulnerable to injuries and accidents due to the nature of their work. For instance, nurses and ward attendants may suffer slip and fall injuries, sprains and strains due to constant lifting of patients and heavy weights etc. If you or a loved one suffers hospital injuries, our 24×7 injury lawyers can advise you about the legal steps to be taken.
Victims of hospital injuries are entitled to compensation for:
• Medical expenses and rehabilitation
• Pain and suffering
• Loss of income
• Funeral expenses in case of death
• Loss of guidance/care/companionship in case of death or disability
Punitive damages may be awarded if the fault or negligence is particularly severe.
It is important to remember that in the case of hospital injuries, there is a strict statute of limitations within which charges have to be filed. This time period varies between countries, provinces, states etc. Our serious injury lawyers can assist you to complete all paperwork in time and represent you in all negotiations and dealings with the hospital, insurers and other representatives.
If you, your family or a friend has been injured in an accident, please feel free to speak to one of our injury lawyers for a free consultation about how we are able to assist in making a personal injury claim. We consult in all cities across Ontario with a no win no fee guarantee. Our personal injury lawyers have helped victims secure millions of dollars in personal injury cases. Call us Toll Free On our 24/7 Injury Hotline: 1 – 844 495 7333 or Text a Personal Injury Lawyer 24/7 and get instant help.TM (416 807 3486)
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