The Standards of Care under which the medical community functions mandate that a patient receive correct treatment on a timely basis. Failure to render such care promptly may represent a breach of such standards, and, as such constitute medical negligence (malpractice).
If treatment of a medical condition is delayed or incorrect (contraindicated), the condition may worsen; sometimes to a point where it cannot be treated properly, causing the death of a patient, or leaving them with a permanent injury. Delayed or incorrect treatment of certain cancers, may significantly reduce a patient’s responsiveness to treatment, affect the possibility of recurrences and spread, and, may reduce their chance of survival (also see: MisdiagnosisCancers.htm)
Delays in treatment or contraindicated treatment may also expose a person to incorrect and unnecessary treatment or tests, which may have harmful effects.
In an emergency room setting, or at the scene of an accident, the first hour after trauma or a medical event is known as “the golden hour”. It is widely believed that during this hour, the efficacy of treatment is greatly enhanced., depending of course upon the level of trauma or the patient’s condition from which they suffer (e.g., stroke or heart attack). If treatment is delayed, the likelihood that it will be ineffective, or not as effective, will increase over time. Essentially, it is an accepted premise, that the sooner the treatment commences, the better the prognosis and outcome. Delays in treatment may constitute malpractice.
Contraindicated or incorrect treatment in light of a correct and clear diagnosis may constitute medical malpractice. However, just because a healthcare provider chose a mode of treatment which was not effective, does not mean he or she committed malpractice. The choices made by the healthcare professional need to have been outside of the standards of care discussed above; and such choices must have resulted in a patient suffering an injury of some permanency in order for monetary damages to be credibly pursued.
Blume Goldfaden New Jersey medical malpractice attorneys and medical staff have the experience and expertise to determine if a patient’s treatment was delayed or incorrect, and if such malpractice resulted in an injury for which damages may be recovered. Call us for an evaluation at no cost to you.