MISSISSIPPI. Doctors have a responsibility to offer patients medical services that meet a basic standard of care. Failure to do so can result in medical errors or medical malpractice. While doctors are trained professionals who should protect their patients, individuals can take steps to protect themselves from common medical errors. Here are a few common medical errors and what you can do to protect yourself and your loved ones:
- Preventing prescription errors. Bring a list of all medications and dosages with you to each and every doctor’s appointment. This will make it less likely that your doctor will prescribe a drug that could interact with drugs you are currently taking. You may even want to bring all bottles with you to your appointments. Many medical malpractice errors occur because a doctor isn’t aware of all medication a patient is taking. When receiving new medication, talk to your doctor about side effects, interactions, and food and drink restrictions you should know about when taking the medicine. Know which side effects are dangerous and require immediate medical attention. It can also be useful to know your dose so that you can check your bottle to make sure the amount you are taking is accurate.
- To prevent diagnostic errors, ask when you’ll get results for a test. According to the S. Department of Health and Human Services, some patients may assume that no news from a test is good news, but this is not always the case. Ask your doctor when and how you’ll receive results and expect a follow-up.
- Don’t assume that health care providers have information crucial to your care. A doctor writing for a recent Scientific American article spoke about the complexity of the health care system and the fact that as a hospital physician, he may have to go through pages of information for each patient, sometimes detailing 50+ hospitalizations. Because his time is limited, he may only be able to skim these medical records. Patients can make sure that doctors don’t miss crucial information by talking to their doctors about information they believe may be important. For instance, if you were recently treated for a drug-resistant infection and are sick again, it could be helpful for your doctor to know this to get you started on the right medication right away.
- Learn as much as possible about your condition. The more you know about your condition, the more you can advocate for yourself.
Patients who have suffered as a result of medical malpractice or medical errors have the right to seek justice for their losses. If you or a loved one has been hurt due to medical negligence, the medical malpractice lawyers at Bullock & Wood in Mississippi may be able to help you. Medical malpractice laws can be complex and individuals may have a hard time seeking the answers they deserve when they ask doctors about their case. Having a lawyer on your side can help. Visit http://www.bullockwood.com today to learn more.