Careless communication or miscommunication between medical professionals can lead to serious medical injuries. If you or a loved one suffered harm due to a physician communication error, we urge you to contact a skilled Baltimore medical malpractice attorney who can help. At Arfaa Law Group, we are ready to represent you and help you get the compensation you are rightfully owed for your harm.
While strong communication can help reduce incidents of malpractice in the first place, clear communication can also help after malpractice has occurred. According to a recent study published in the Journal of Patient Safety and Risk Management, apologizing to patients reduces hospital defense and liability costs. Essentially, when hospital staff and doctors are willing to explain, apologize and resolve negative medical events it may substantially decrease defense and liability exposure.
The study found that using Erlanger’s Communication and Resolution Program (CRP), which was initiated in January of 2009, led to a 66 percent reduction in legal claims filed; a 51 percent reduction in defense costs; and a 53 percent reduction in the time it took to close cases. No medical mistake took place in 65 percent of adverse events. When medical professionals explained errors to patients and their families using CRP protocol, 43 percent of cases were resolved by an apology alone, even though 60 percent of those clients had legal representation.
Not only did the approach decrease liability, it promotes honest and open dialogue between physicians and patients about what went wrong. It also helps identify adverse health consequences for patients and allows doctors to treat them in a timely manner.
The mistakes that result from a communication error or other form of malpractice can result in costly medical bills, lost wages and a decreased quality of life. Fortunately, Maryland law allows victims of such errors to recover compensation for their out-of-pocket expenses arising from the malpractice. Maryland law also permits plaintiffs to recover compensation for intangible losses (i.e., subjective losses), such as pain and suffering, scarring and/or disfigurement.
Not all injuries or illnesses related to a medical professional’s care are grounds for a medical malpractice claim. In Maryland, medical malpractice takes place when a patient is injured because a medical professional failed to exercise the standard of care and skills that another medical professional in the same specialty would have exercised in the same situation. In order to win a malpractice claim, the plaintiff must be able to establish the following elements:
- Duty of care: the medical professional owed the patient a duty of care;
- Breach of duty: the medical professional failed to uphold this duty;
- Causation: the medical professional’s actions caused the injuries in question; and
- Damages: the plaintiff suffered damages as a result of their injuries.
When communication is unreliable, then healthcare providers and patients are left vulnerable to medical errors. If you have reason to believe that you or a loved one was harmed by a negligent breakdown in communication, you need to speak to a seasoned Baltimore physician communication error attorney without delay. At Arfaa Law Group, our team will help you secure the compensation you rightfully deserve for your harm. For more information, call us today at 410-889-1850 or reach us through our website.
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