Did you know that being discharged early from the hospital can cause further injury to an existing condition, or can cause a completely new set of problems. In these situations, the doctor or nurse responsible for discharging you or your loved one may be legally responsible for anything that happens after you have been injured.
“Many patients receiving medical treatment are unaware of the realities of some hospital’s methods and motivations,” said Thomas D. Bumgardner, Charlotte-based medical malpractice lawyer. “In fact, being discharged early often times isn’t even an accident and may be financially motivated.”
The Definition of Medical Malpractice
As we have discussed in previous blogs about the requirements of a successful medical malpractice cases, the injured party must prove that a health care provider gave care that falls below the standard of practices in the medical community causing injury or death to a patient. The following four things must be present in medical malpractice cases:
- The doctor officially treated the patient
- The doctor was negligent
- The negligent acts caused the injury
- The injury led to certain damages (loss of quality of life, loss of wages, etc.)
In cases involving early discharge of a patient, a medical expert must testify that a competent and skilled medical professional would not have discharged the patient given their condition and other circumstances of their treatment.
Why Would a Hospital Discharge a Patient Early?
The most common causes of early hospital discharge are found in the following two scenarios:
1. Poor Hospital Planning
Hospitals sometimes face overcrowding and understaffing. In their attempts to push treated patients out and bring new patients in, a doctor may discharge a patient simply with the intention of opening up a spot for a new patient. Cases such as this could be prevented with better planning and allocation of resources from the hospital.
2. Medical Negligence
If a doctor fails to perform the correct tests or misdiagnoses their patient, especially if the condition that is misdiagnosed is serious, the patient is now at risk for being discharged at the incorrect time and having their condition worsen.
How Do You Avoid Being Discharged Early?
First, the best thing to do is to inform your doctor of any pain you are feeling or any concerns that you will not be able to take care of yourself. Second, if you feel you may be getting discharged early, say that directly to the physician. Thirdly, request your discharge rights and read them to see if your doctor is violating those rights.
Hire a Medical Malpractice Lawyer
We believe in your right as a citizen to be compensated for the negligence of a medical professional. We don’t settle for anything less than you deserve.
If you feel you or a loved one is a victim of malpractice, we encourage you to call the law offices of Thomas D. Bumgardner at 704-887-4981 to schedule a free consultation.