In the event of serious injury or illness, certain individuals may be required to stay at the hospital for a prolonged period to receive consistent medical attention. Unfortunately, hospitals are often overcrowded and taxed beyond their means. Because of this, hospital staff are frequently encouraged to discharge patients early.
Sadly, patients who are discharged from the hospital early can experience a variety of health problems. These can range in severity and potential complications but almost always negatively impact the patients and those around them.
If you or a loved one were discharged early and experienced unexpected complications as a result, it’s important to know what options are available. To help, this post will identify some common risks associated with the early release of hospital patients.
Does early release constitute medical malpractice?
To take legal action for damage resulting from an early discharge from the hospital, you’d need to sue for medical malpractice. Whether an early discharge constitutes medical malpractice is dependent on a few factors.
You must be able to prove two things to substantiate a medical malpractice claim.
First, you’d need to prove that the provider or providers who treated you were negligent in some way. You’d also need to demonstrate that their negligence resulted in injury to your person or property.
Does proving negligence require expert testimony?
Medical malpractice, or medical negligence, happens when a doctor, nurse, or other medical provider fails to uphold an applicable standard of care.
Similar to the duty of care motorists have when driving, the standard of care requires all medical personnel to provide the kind of care that any other medical professional with the same amount of training and experience would provide under similar circumstances.
For these reasons, medical malpractice claims typically require expert testimony from another professional in the accused practitioner’s field.
Negligence Isn’t Enough
When it comes to medical malpractice, merely proving negligence isn’t enough. To mount a successful claim, you must prove that the negligence directly resulted in an injury.
In the case of an early release, you’d have to show how that decision caused an injury. For instance, a patient who goes to the hospital with a condition affecting their balance and equilibrium and is released prematurely could fall and injure themselves upon returning home.
When is early discharge considered medical malpractice?
As stated, any successful medical malpractice claim requires you to prove that you were injured. In the case of an early discharge, you must make a compelling argument that you were discharged too quickly.
There are three primary ways to demonstrate that you were discharged prematurely. One is to show that you developed a condition that wouldn’t have manifested if you’d been under continued medical observation. A second option is to prove that you sustained an injury that wouldn’t have occurred had you been in the hospital.
Finally, you may be able to prove medical malpractice if you can show that the problem got worse following your discharge when it could have been treated during a prolonged stay.
Contact Hunt Law Today
If you or a loved one have sustained an injury resulting from another party’s negligence or reckless behavior, you might be eligible to seek compensation for your injuries.
Hunt Law has spent nearly two decades advocating for personal injury victims in the Northern New Mexico region. Our thorough understanding of the applicable laws has enabled us to obtain settlements for individuals in a variety of difficult situations.
Whether your claim relates to catastrophic injury, wrongful death, personal injury, or medical malpractice, chances are good that we’ve handled similar cases in the past.
At Hunt Law, we approach every case with understanding and compassion. Contact us today and let us know how we can serve you.