When people present to the emergency departments in New York City’s hospitals, they are typically seen by triage nurses prior to being evaluated by a doctor. The role of the triage nurse is to assess a patient to determine the severity of his or her condition. If such a condition is deemed to be serious, the patient may be taken back to be treated right away. However, despite protocols in place that are meant to help triage nurses identify severe cases, the entire assessment may take only a few minutes. Often, this is not enough time to adequately tell how serious a case may be. If treatment does end up being delayed, the consequences can be life-altering.
If you have been the victim of what you believe to be negligence on the part of a doctor and/or the Queens facility in which he or she practices, you may be contemplating initiating legal action. Like many who come to us here at Futterman, Sirotkin and Seinfeld, LLP, however, you may be concerned that your lack of medical knowledge will undermine your claim. Not to worry; state law allows you to call in an expert witness to testify on your behalf.
Cases of negligence against hospitals and healthcare providers in New York City may often be difficult to argue simply because such disputes come down to the word of educated medical professionals against laymen. To help bolster their claims, plaintiffs in these cases may be wise to seek out other qualified clinicians to testify as experts on their behalf. The key to successfully using such testimony is ensuring that such witnesses meet the qualifications of being considered experts. If they do not, then one risks having any evidence or testimony they offer being discredited.
The image of a doctor snapping a surgical glove onto his or her hand has become emblazoned in the minds of most everyone in New York City. Yet despite gloves being so closely associated with healthcare, many of those that we here at Futterman, Sirotkin and Seinfeld, LLP work often seem to know little about when and when it is not appropriate for a healthcare provider to use gloves during treatment. Knowing what the general guidelines for glove use may be could potentially help you determine a cause should you suffer a hospital-acquired infection.
People are dying in the hospital--and not necessarily because of the illness or disease that brought them in. Earlier this year, The Washington Post reported medical errors as the third leading cause of death in the United States. Patient identification mix-ups are often to blame for these unfortunate errors.
Most in Queens may assume that their being discharged from the hospital is a sign that the worst of their medical ordeals is over. However, the execution of one's discharge may have a direct influence on his or her potential for recovery. Statistics seem to back this idea up. Information shared by the AARP Bulletin shows that of a sample of Medicare patients hospitalized for surgery, 50 percent had either died or been readmitted within a year.
For the most part, the care that patients receive in hospitals and medical centers both in New York City and throughout the rest of the U.S. is top notch, delivered by skilled caregivers who understand the most up-to-date medical practices. Yet even the best clinicians may not be able to provide adequate care if they do not have all of the information regarding a patient’s case. In fact, poor communication between healthcare providers ranks as one of the most common causes of medical errors.
Those seeking treatment at healthcare facilities in Queens likely have the expectation that not only are the environments in which they are cared for clean and sterilized, but that those who will be working with them practice good hygiene, as well. Some may point to statistics recently released by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention showing decreases in the number of healthcare-associated infections across the board as proof that these are ceasing to become a concern for patients in the U.S. Yet the fact remains that 721,800 patients still contract infections while receiving treatment in America.
Most in Queens may agree that while modern healthcare has turned what once may have been considered life-threatening scenarios into very treatable outcomes, there may still be medical cases that may have no answer. However, for the family and friends of those patients who suffer sudden and seemingly inexplicable failures in their health, that may not be an easy answer to accept. If medical evidence seems to point to the possibility that fatal outcomes may have been prevented had early warning signs been recognized, then the desire to hold those who missed such signs accountable may be understandable.
When you go to the hospital in New York City, you likely do so believing that you will be safe. Yet simply because care services are rendered at hospitals and medical centers does not necessarily mean that they are safe. In fact, your condition may contribute to the dangers that you may face there, particularly from falls. The question then becomes is what should hospitals be doing in order to keep you from falling.