Our last blog discussed ways that you can avoid becoming a victim of medical errors involving medications. Today, we discuss some ways you can help prevent medical errors while you are in the hospital.
Avoiding Hospital Errors
If you have a choice, choose a hospital that has much experience in providing the surgery, procedures, and care that you require (research shows that patients have better results at hospitals with a great deal of experience with their condition). When given medications, ask whether the medication was ordered by your doctor and confirm that the proper medication is being given, at the correct time, and in the correct dosage. Make sure that each person providing you with direct care (doctors, nurses, orderlies, and others) wash their hands thoroughly and with soap (a study has shown that when patients checked whether their health care providers washed their hands, the providers washed their hands more often and used more soap) – hand washing is one of the simplest and most effective ways to prevent the spread of infections in hospitals.
When you are being discharged from the hospital, make sure that you fully understand your treatment plan at home and when to seek medical advice. Make sure you understand your medications and that you receive prescriptions for the medications that you will need. Request written discharge instructions and review them to make sure you fully understand them before leaving the hospital. If you are required to follow up with your doctor, surgeon, or other health care provider after leaving the hospital, make sure you know who to contact and how to contact them. Research has shown that at the time of discharge from the hospital, doctors think their patients understand more than they really do about what they should do or not do when they return home.
Contact us if you need to find a medical malpractice lawyer in your area to represent you with regard to a claim involving medical errors. You can also call us toll free at 800-295-3959 for assistance.