Medical errors occur when some aspect of a medical plan does not go as intended, or when the wrong plan was implemented from the beginning. Often times, medical mistakes are caused by negligence on behalf of the medical professional, and there is nothing you can do. But taking precautions ahead of time can help protect you against medical malpractice. Here are some tips:
Preventing Medication Mistakes
- Make sure that all of your doctors and the pharmacist know every medication, supplement, vitamin and herb you are taking.
- Make sure your doctor knows about any allergies you have, or adverse reactions you have had to a medication.
- When your doctor writes you a prescription, make sure you can read it (because if you can’t, the pharmacist may not be able to either).
- Request information about your medicine in terms you can understand (both when your medication is prescribed and when you receive it).
Preventing Surgical Errors
- Make sure that you, your doctor, and your surgeon all agree and are clear on exactly what will be done.
- Performing surgery at the wrong site is rare, but it does happen. Be absolutely sure the nurses and surgeon are aware which part of your body to operate on.
General Steps to Prevent Medical Errors
- Vocalize your questions or concerns
- You have a right to question anyone who is involved with your care.
- Do not assume that everyone knows everything they need to.
- Whenever you are being handed from one health care professional to another, such as from your doctor to a hospitalist, ask the person doing the hand-off what the new health care professional needs to know. Then you can make sure it all gets communicated, even if it was not written down.
- Ask a family member or friend to come with you to the doctor’s office or hospital; they can speak up if you are unable.
- Find out why a test or treatment is needed and how it can help you (you may find you are better off without it).
If you suffered a medical error in the Atlanta area, please contact the Atlanta medical malpractice lawyer at Robbins & Associates, PC today to learn how we can get you the money you deserve.