Can You Sue an Emergency Room?

August 15, 2021
Can You Sue an Emergency Room?

If you or a loved one have experienced malpractice or negligence in an emergency room, you might be wondering if you can sue the hospital or any of the medical workers that were there. Emergency rooms are often chaotic, and malpractice can happen at any moment. 

If you experienced harm in an emergency room, there are some steps you can take and options you have to potentially get compensation. There are certain things you must prove for a judge and jury to determine there was malpractice. An injury lawyer can help you figure out if you have the evidence needed for a case.

Medical Malpractice Cases 

Suing an emergency room or certain people working in the emergency room will involve a large amount of paperwork. Since it is a type of medical malpractice case, you will need to prove a number of elements. 

The first step is to establish what kind of doctor-patient relationship existed. This will involve you gathering info on the doctors who treated you or your loved one. This is easy to prove as their name and signature will typically be on your discharge papers or other medical paperwork that you received from the hospital. Make sure to keep all paperwork that was given to you. 

The next step is to prove negligence on behalf of the doctor, nurses, or hospital as a whole. This will involve you showing the quality of care that you received. This is often more difficult to prove because the standard of care in emergency rooms is often less than the care that is received in other medical environments. 

Emergency rooms can often be very busy and short-staffed. Even if the doctor is trying the best they can, it might not be enough. The expectations will always need to be adjusted to account for the situation. But in a true case of malpractice, you’ve experienced more than a simple mistake or oversight—there was negligence involved in their actions.  

To prove negligence, you will need expert testimony. The expert will state the quality of care that was expected in this situation and see if it matches the care that you received. 

Proving Harm 

The most important step when it comes to suing an emergency room is proving harm. Harm shows the doctor’s actions made the problem worse. This is especially the case when it comes to misdiagnosis. As another example, you might have needed surgery that you did not receive. 

Harm can also come in the form of lost wages due to being in the hospital for longer than necessary or for pain and suffering, along with other damages. 

Get Ahold of a Personal Injury Lawyer After a Medical Malpractice

Now you have an answer to your question: Can I sue an emergency room? You don’t always have to go to court after a medical malpractice incident, but it’s certainly an option. It might be the best option if you experienced extreme bodily harm or are facing long-term injuries. 

Find out what option may be best for you by talking with a medical malpractice lawyer at Lane & Lane, LLC. Call 312-332-1400 or fill out the contact form below to reach our firm.

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