The mentally ill often do not get the care that they need, and the severity of their illness is often misdiagnosed. A 30-year old man from Ohio who had been hospitalized a number of times for schizophrenia nevertheless was able to get behind the wheel of a car 18 days after he had attempted suicide. The young man then slammed his car head on into another vehicle killing him and an individual riding in the other vehicle.
Dr. Otis Webb Brawley has written a book called, "How We Do Harm: A Doctor Breaks Ranks About Being Sick in America." Despite what politicians may claim Dr. Brawley blames much of physician malpractice and medical malpractice going on in the United States on the physician.
A patient has arrived at the hospital with complaints of chest pains and shortness of breath. The doctor failed to diagnose his condition, suggested that the patient was suffering from a virus and instead of treating him told the patient he go home. No medication was prescribed and it appears the only treatment suggested was bed rest. The patient went home but felt that something much worse was wrong than a virus. He then wrote up his will and a short time later died.
We've written before that the number one preventive measure to medical malpractice and hospital mistakes in our Ohio and Kentucky hospitals is communication. Such communication can be between doctors and nurses, anesthetists and surgeons, hospital staff and administrators and, particularly, medical providers and their patients before, during and after care have taken place.
A professor at the Ohio State University College of Pharmacy is concerned about the lack of post-discharge medication management for patients released from the hospital. Patients are not often cognitive of side effects or other drug related reactions that should alert them to problems concerning the medications they have been prescribed. Such medication errors can lead to changes such as weight gain for a patient with congestive heart failure that could have significant adverse effects upon the patient's health.
Problems with anesthesia can lead to insufficient blood flow that can ultimately result in brain damage. Often errors in administering anesthesia come about due to simple communication errors between medical staff. The results of such errors can be devastating, but there does appear to be good news concerning its use.
Medical mistakes and hospital errors increase when Ohio nurses and doctors suffer from fatigue. The Ohio Joint Commission, which licenses hospitals, reports that many medical personnel work 12-hour shifts or even longer on a regular basis. These extreme work hours increase the likelihood that a person will make a medical error when addressing patients' needs.Nurses, in particular, often extend their shifts beyond the scheduled 12 hours. This happens when patients have pressing medical needs or are unstable. Concerns from the commission include a decrease in empathy from nurses and lapses in decision-making skills when the nurse is exhausted. Ohio and local Hamilton County officials are working to improve both medical personnel and patient experiences in the region's hospitals.
When placed at the mercy of hospitals and medical professionals, new mothers in the Cincinnati area worry about every possible worst case scenario when they are about to give birth. For some, those worries are simply nervous fears that never become reality, but sometimes those worries are tragically warranted. The family of an Illinois girl with cerebral palsy has just settled a $7.5 million lawsuit over medical malpractice claims related to a delivery gone wrong.The girl was born in 2002 at a Chicago area hospital. The lawsuit was filed in March 2009 by the girl's grandparents, who are now her legal guardians and have had full custody of her for about five years. The claim alleges that the girl became permanently disabled as a result of medical malpractice during her birth.
Do you trust your Ohio doctor? We all want to, but it turns out that there are some areas of medicine where incompetent doctors are performing surgery. Surgery that people think is routine until it is too late to do something about it. Call it nip and tuck for the common person (versus the wealthy), but the truth is that there are many doctors performing cosmetic surgery that have not much more than a basic medical license.
Medical misdiagnosis happens in Ohio as well as other places. Unfortunately, many of these mistakes can be fatal. One case in point occurred in West Virginia, and led to the victim's family being awarded $4 million based on a physician's failure to diagnosis the woman's condition properly.