Many people consider only doctors when they think of medical malpractice, but nursing errors in a Louisville hospital can also cause devastating, life-altering injuries. Some may even lead to death, since nurses often administer medications, monitor patients’ vitals, and ensure the doctor receives notifications of any new symptoms or concerns.
At The Powell Law Firm, PLLC, our Louisville medical malpractice attorney can help you understand your legal options after a nursing error injures you or a loved one. We offer free, no-obligation case evaluations, helping you better understand the nature of medical malpractice and whether you may be eligible for compensation for your financial losses, lost wages, and pain and suffering. Call us today at 502-242-7000 to schedule a time to discuss your case.
How does a nursing error in a Louisville hospital occur?
Even though nurses alone are not responsible for overseeing a hospital patient’s care, they do owe every patient a duty to provide the best care possible. When a nurse fails to live up to the proper level of care necessary, negligence may occur. While not all mistakes are medical malpractice, some may be. Dangerous or deadly errors in a hospital can occur when nurses:
- Do not monitor a patient as they should
- Dismiss unusual or poor vital signs
- Fail to measure important vital signs
- Do not update the patient’s chart properly
- Fail to administer necessary medication
- Administer the wrong medication, or the wrong amount of medication
- Do not offer the necessary support for feeding, cleaning, or toileting
- Do not respond properly to signs of distress
- Fail to respond to a patient call for assistance
- Do not report concerns to the patient’s physician
When does a nursing error constitute medical malpractice?
Everyone makes mistakes, even nurses. To prove that a nurse’s mistake has reached the level of malpractice, you must establish the following:
- There was an established relationship between you and the nurse;
- The nurse violated the proper standard of care, i.e., failed to act as a reasonable nurse would have; and
- This failure caused your injuries or illness or caused your condition to worsen
As you can see, the “standard of care” plays a key role in a medical malpractice case. This phrase refers to the actions a reasonable nurse in the same situation would take. For this reason, expert witnesses are integral to proving malpractice and recovering compensation for your injuries.
Proving a violation of the standard of care is usually the most difficult part of any malpractice case. We have the resources to identify qualified expert witnesses who can outline the proper standard of care you deserved, and help us hold the nurse responsible for her error.
Is the hospital also liable for my injuries due to a nursing error?
In short, yes. Employers are financially liable for the negligence of their employees when they cause injury or harm on the clock. This concept is known as vicarious liability. You may be able to file a claim against the facility as well as the negligent nurse.
Hospitals typically provide malpractice insurance for their employees and many nurses carry their own policy. Hospitals, clinics, and other facilities, however, usually have much larger policies than an individual nurse. By including the hospital in your claim, you may be able to recover more than you could by going after the nurse alone.
This is especially important when the malpractice causes serious complications that require ongoing care or cause lifelong disabilities. Providing around-the-clock care, especially when paired with lost wages and rehabilitative therapies, can easily cost hundreds of thousands of dollars annually.
How can a lawyer help me recover from my injuries?
Recovering compensation after medical malpractice will not erase what happened or bring back your lost loved one, but it can reduce the stress you experience and improve your quality of life. For many, this compensation is necessary to get expensive therapies, assistive devices, and other tools. It is also vital if you cannot return to work, and need the money to pay your mortgage or household bills.
Medical malpractice law is complex. You need a skilled attorney and strong expert witnesses to help maximize your payout. Your case requires a complete investigation and thorough analysis, and a knowledgeable negotiator when it comes time to work out a settlement. And all this must happen quickly. You only have one year from the date you discover your injury to file your claim against the nurse and hospital.
The Powell Law Firm, PLLC Helps You Get the Compensation You Need
The Louisville medical malpractice team at The Powell Law Firm, PLLC understands how nursing errors in hospitals can severely impact your life. We know how these cases work, and have a network of medical experts who can help us get you the large settlement you deserve. Call our Louisville office today at 502-242-7000 to schedule a time to meet with us.