An exhaustive study by researchers from Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine performed on 25 years of medical malpractice payments has found that diagnostic errors account for the biggest share of successful medical malpractice claims. Interestingly, little has been done to combat the prevalence of diagnostic errors as an estimated 40,000 to 80,000 Americans die from missed diagnoses annually.
Diagnostic errors include medical mistakes, which occur when a physician or other healthcare provider incorrectly diagnoses and, as a result, mistreats a medical condition; delays in making the correct diagnosis; or completely fails to diagnose the existence of a medical condition.
The study, which analyzed findings from about 350,000 malpractice allegations from the National Practitioner Data Bank, revealed interesting findings about the state of diagnostic errors in the U.S. today.
The foremost finding was that diagnostic errors were the main source of successful claims, accounting for 29 percent of all medical malpractice claims, including surgical errors, failure to properly treat a condition and medication errors.
Additionally, an astounding 41 percent of diagnostic error cases result in patient fatality, which trumps medication error and treatment error death rates of 39 and 26 percent, respectively. One of the lead researchers, Dr. David E. Newman-Toker of Johns Hopkins Medicine, sums up these points by calling diagnostic errors the most costly and deadly of all medical errors.
If you believe that you or someone you love has suffered injuries as a result of a diagnostic error, contact the Galfand Berger medical malpractice attorneys in Philadelphia to discuss the details of your potential malpractice lawsuit. We will determine if you have a valid diagnostic error claim and assist you in this stressful time. Our dedicated medical malpractice lawyers will protect your rights and fight to secure for you the fair compensation which you are entitled to under the law.
Galfand Berger has law offices conveniently located in Philadelphia, Reading, and Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, and handle medical malpractices cases throughout Pennsylvania, including the Harrisburg and Allentown regions, as well as South Jersey. Call Galfand Berger today at 1-800-222-8792 to schedule a free consultation or contact us online.