Chicago Improper Treatment Attorneys
Modern medical science offers a range of amazing treatments that can cure dangerous illnesses and alleviate painful symptoms. Some people rely on a supply of pharmaceuticals to keep their cholesterol levels under control. Some people undergo surgeries to reduce their risk of heart failure. These treatments are generally prescribed by a trusted healthcare professional. We rely on our doctors, nurses, and other specialists to properly diagnose your medical problems and to then set up an appropriate treatment for the issue. Tragically, many people fall victim to negligent medical professionals who give them improper treatments.
As the Chicago medical malpractice attorneys at Karlin, Fleisher & Falkenberg, LLC well know, receiving improper treatment can have disastrous consequences. It is not a simple mistake with an easy fix. The unnecessary, incorrect treatment itself could hurt you. You might suffer from side effects you never should’ve experienced. In addition, getting the wrong treatment might mean you’re not receiving the proper medical help you actually need. If you are the victim of improper treatment caused by medical malpractice, you might be legally entitled to financial compensation. Click here to see how our attorneys can help you.
Medical Malpractice and Improper Treatment
Illinois law has high expectations for all medical professionals. Legally, doctors, nurses, and other hospital employees must treat all patients with care. If they behave recklessly, or if they don’t have the knowledge or skills they should, then someone can get seriously hurt—even die. Healthcare professionals who fail to properly care for their patients might be guilty of medical malpractice.
Patients suffer from improper treatment due to a variety of reasons. Some examples of dangerous mistakes that can lead to improper treatment include:
- Failure to carefully review patient information
- Outdated or incorrect medical knowledge
- Clerical errors
- Incorrect application of appropriate treatment
- Surgical errors
This is certainly not a complete list of the causes of improper treatment. Patients find themselves taking the wrong medicines or undergoing inappropriate procedures for a wide variety of reasons. In addition, it can be difficult for an average person to tell whether medical malpractice is to blame for their incorrect treatment. If you have been injured due to incorrect treatment, you should seek experienced legal counsel as soon as possible.
What Exactly Does Improper Medical Treatment Mean?
When it comes to medical malpractice, an improper treatment case can encompass a number of different scenarios. At its heart though, an improper treatment case revolves around a patient receiving treatment that is not sufficient when it comes to addressing their medical condition.
That could involve a patient needing surgical intervention for a medical condition, but instead, they are given medication or a cancer patient who would benefit from chemotherapy, not being prescribed the treatment. Improper medical treatment for a condition can result from medical errors or even a simple breakdown in communication between the physician and the patient. Improper treatments are often the result of the following conditions:
- Failure to communicate with the patient
- Failure to diagnose a medical condition
- Ordering the wrong medical or diagnostic tests
- Failure to review a patient’s past medical history
- Outdated information on current medical treatments
- Clerical errors
- Surgical errors
The one thing that most improper medical treatments have in common is that they further hurt or damage a patient’s health and safety. Improper treatment is serious because it means that a current condition may further go untreated and deteriorate a person’s health further. Improper treatment could also mean damaging or inflicting harm on a perfectly healthy part of a patient’s body.
Either way, instead of improving their health, a patient is left even more physically vulnerable and even financially crippled as medical bills pile up for treatments that were never going to address their initial concerns.
Proving Improper Treatment is Medical Malpractice
All improper treatment cases are different, carrying a unique set of circumstances that set them apart from other cases. However, there are several characteristics that all cases must include in order for a case to meet the legal requirements for medical malpractice. The first condition that must be met sounds rather straightforward, it is that there must be an established-doctor patient relationship between the victim and the caregiver. You must have sufficient proof that you have in fact been seeking the medical advice of a physician through the proper medical channels. You are unable to sue a physician for improperly diagnosing you at a friend’s cocktail party. The other factors that must be met to proceed with an improper treatment case include:
- A breach of the standard of care
- The standard of care refers to general medical standards recognized by healthcare professionals as acceptable medical treatment options for particular conditions or injuries. To help prove that this standard of care was breached a legal team would examine whether another reasonably trained and skilled physician with a similar background would have provided the same care or treatment under the same circumstances.
- Negligence resulted in an injury
- An improper treatment case must show that negligence was to blame for the wrong treatment being administered. Not only that but that this negligence in treatment was responsible for causing further injury to the patient. That could include their original condition progressing and becoming worse, or a new set of medical problems that resulted from improper treatment.
- The injury led to damages
- Even proving injury isn’t enough in a medical malpractice case. A victim must demonstrate that a physician’s negligence caused an injury that resulted in specific damages to their health.
Even if all of these conditions have been established, the state of Illinois requires what is known as an “affidavit of merit” before a case can move any further in the legal process. An affidavit of merit is a document from a certified healthcare professional that lays out why there is a reasonable cause for the lawsuit to exist. This healthcare professional must have knowledge of the medical issues pertaining to the case itself and must either practice or teach medicine in a field related to the subject matter they are commenting on. An attorney experienced in improper treatment cases can help a victim secure this documentation.
Who is Liable for Improper Treatment?
In improper treatment cases, it is the treating physician who typically received the brunt of the blame. However, that may not always be the case. Many improper treatment decisions rest in the hands of the physicians themselves but doctors could be making those decisions based on information from potentially dozens of different sources.
A negligent physician may be solely liable for improper treatment, or there may be contributing parties that bear liability for improper treatments. Medical treatment happens through a complex web of communication and interactions between doctors, nurses, administrative staff, secretaries, and increasingly, the use of electronic devices. Communication errors, clerical errors, someone’s failure to request past medical records, all of these factors may have contributed to an improper diagnosis.
Seeking legal counsel from an experienced attorney means someone is conducting a thorough investigation into the circumstances surrounding your improper treatment. It also means that an attorney can get to the bottom of who is legally liable for your injuries. At Karlin, Fleisher & Falkenberg, LLC we want to make sure that all those responsible for your improper treatment are held accountable for their actions, and that you recover the maximum amount of compensation that you deserve.
Hire an Attorney Right Away
Improper medical treatment has already delayed your recovery, don’t delay getting legal help in recovering the compensation that you deserve. Illinois sets a strict statute of limitations on the time you have to file a medical malpractice case. You are given two years from the date you knew or should have reasonably known that an injury was caused as a result of a negligent healthcare provider.
The state does include a broader medical malpractice statute in certain instances, but it is best to consult with a seasoned attorney to determine the time limit you have for your particular case. The sooner you are able to speak with an attorney, the better. It will lessen the chance that your case will be dismissed for failing to meet the statute of limitations. The attorneys with Karlin, Fleisher & Falkenberg, LLC can review the facts and timeframe surrounding your case and help you determine what you best legal options are.
At Karlin, Fleisher & Falkenberg, LLC, we believe medical professionals should be held accountable when they act with carelessness or neglect. Call us today at 312-346-8620 if you suspect you are the victim of improper treatment. Our skilled medical malpractice attorneys are ready to fight to get you the compensation you deserve.