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Next steps after being injured by medical negligence

Medical mistakes can have profound consequences. Unfortunately, when people are injured due to hospital negligence or medical malpractice, it can be difficult to know where to turn. While the confusion following a serious medical injury is understandable, those moments are also very crucial. Maryland readers who have been injured due to medical negligence may find the following blog on reacting to a medical injury helpful.

Whenever patients suffer harm in a healthcare facility, it is vital that they request a copy of their medical records immediately. Patients have a right to their records and these records can prove helpful if a dispute should arise down the line. Furthermore, because accredited hospitals are required to perform internal investigations following serious medical events, it is good for patients to ask to be part of the process. That way their side of the story becomes part of the record, as well as the analysis.

Similarly, in cases where a patient has died in a healthcare facility, it is important that the family members of the deceased order a forensic autopsy. Generally speaking, autopsies are the most reliable way for the hospital to determine what happened when an unexpected death occurs. Unfortunately, many hospitals do not conduct autopsies routinely, but the family of the deceased has the right to request one if they choose, though they may have to bear the expense.

Finally, whenever someone is injured while in the care of a healthcare facility, it is important to speak with an attorney. A knowledgeable medical malpractice attorney will be able to help injured patients understand the medical malpractice process, advise them on next steps and assess the quality of the case. Even if an attorney is not willing to take the case, the advice that the attorney provides may prove to be invaluable.

Source: Philly.com, "6 steps to take if you've suffered harm in a medical facility," Marshall Allen, March 26, 2014

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