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Five Things You Can Do to Minimise the Risk of Becoming a Victim of Medical Malpractice

Most of the time, when you visit a hospital or doctor for medical treatment, you will receive medical care that is in line with the standard provided by other medical care givers in the same situation faced with the same type of symptoms or condition. There may, however, be an instance where you will need the help of medical malpractice lawyers in seeking financial compensation for injury and damages suffered.

Six examples of medical malpractice include:

  • Brain injury of the child at birth as the result of oxygen shortage because the nurse/gynaecologist failed to monitor the oxygen supply and stress level of the baby.
  • Injury related to a medical tool left in the body during surgery.
  • Brain injury as the result of oxygen shortage in the blood during a surgery, because the anaesthesiologist failed to monitor the patient correctly.
  • Heart attack related to receiving medication for the wrong medical condition.
  • Long-term health condition related to being treated for another condition as the result of misdiagnosis.

The list is almost endless, but taking preventative steps is certainly recommended to minimise the risk of having to call on medical malpractice lawyers to assist you in seeking compensation. Below are thus five tips to help reduce the risk of becoming a victim of medical negligence.

Carefully Choose the Medical Practitioner

If you have medical aid and are in a position to be selective about the physician, then do your research. Ask friends who they recommend or your trusted general practitioner to refer you to a specialist that they trust. If you have any doubts about a doctor’s competence, then check to see if the physician is operating a registered practice.

If in Doubt, Get a Witness

If you have to undergo a serious treatment and are not sure you understand the treatment and risks ensure that you understand what is discussed.

Don’t Just Sign on the Dotted Line

Don’t simply sign the waiver outright to be admitted to hospital. If you doubt, ask assistance from a medical malpractice lawyer regarding the admission document as you still have the right to informed consent, as well as the right to reasonable medical care according to reasonable standards relevant to the particular treatment. The hospital may refuse to admit you for a selective procedure should you decide not to sign the admittance form and terms.

Ask Questions

It is very important to ask questions about recommended treatment plans. If you are not sure about a diagnosis, ask questions about the risks and how the doctor came to the conclusion. If you are still unsure, seek a second opinion.

Make a list of your concerns and discuss such with the medical practitioner. Do some research on the condition and ask about alternative treatment options if the treatment plan suggested seems too risky. If the doctor is not willing to answer the questions or your concerns, it is better to find another physician. Make sure the doctor follows up with you regarding lab test results. If you don’t hear anything, don’t assume there is nothing wrong; call the doctor’s office for an appointment to discuss the lab results.

Provide the Physician with the Necessary Information

It is imperative to disclose your medical history to the doctor and to provide them with all the information you have about your condition’s symptoms in order for them to make a correct diagnosis. If you keep information about medication you have already taken from the doctor, they may very well prescribe something that can react negatively with the medication you are on or have taken.

Finally, if you have suffered injury as the result of medical negligence call on experienced medical malpractice lawyers for legal guidance and assistance.


Information in this article is not intended as legal advice and is only for informational purposes. Please seek legal guidance from Adele van der Walt before relying on this information to make any legal decisions.

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