Waukegan Medical Malpractice Lawyer
Waukegan Medical Malpractice Attorney
Medical malpractice can happen in any hospital, clinic, or doctor's office and is often caused by negligence on behalf of the healthcare provider. The emotional stress of being injured by an error made by someone else can be overwhelming and exhausting.
At Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers, LLC, our personal injury attorneys are legal advocates for injured victims harmed by medical malpractice. Let us take care of all the legal aspects so that you don't have to worry about it anymore. Our team will handle everything from start to finish.
Contact a Waukegan personal injury lawyer today at (888) 424-5757 (toll-free phone number) or use the contact form to schedule a free consultation. All confidential or sensitive information you share with our legal team remains private through an attorney-client relationship.
Waukegan Has a Wide Range of Medical Needs
The city is home to an ethnically diverse population of over 88,000 and has a median age of twenty-nine years. Roughly 40% of the households in the city are home to children, but there is a significant number of residents who are nearly or past retirement age.
Waukegan's medical needs are as diverse as its population as children, adults, and elderly patients all require different forms of care. They are at risk of experiencing different types of complications or conditions. Area hospitals must be equipped to handle these needs efficiently and effectively.
What Medical Malpractice and Medical Negligence Means
According to the CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention), medical malpractice is defined as "the failure of a healthcare professional to provide services with the level of care that is recognized within the medical community as acceptable."/p>
When this happens, it can result in significant injuries or even wrongful death. Medical malpractice or negligence can be due to many reasons, including:
- Failure to diagnose (missing symptoms)
- Failure to treat (not prescribing the right medication)
- Surgical mistakes (such as leaving a sponge, clamp, scalpel inside of the patient following an operation)
- Anesthesiology mistakes (wrong dosage or reaction to anesthesia)
Medical malpractice is considered negligence because healthcare providers are expected to provide care that adheres to the standards set by their profession.
These standards include:
- The standard of care within your particular medical field
- State and federal laws regarding individual medical procedures
- The experience level of your doctor
- Your treatment plan compared with other options
- And more.
Not all cases fall under "medical malpractice" by definition but are instead "medical negligence", including cases where the physician failed to exercise that degree of knowledge and skill ordinarily used in similar situations by members of their profession under similar circumstances.
Is There a Difference Between Medical Malpractice & Medical Negligence?
Some people use these terms interchangeably or believe they mean the same thing, but medical malpractice and medical negligence are two very different things. For a case to be considered medical malpractice, it must meet certain criteria established by state laws.
In other words, if your doctor committed an act of neglect or made a mistake during your treatment, you can pursue compensation. Still, you won't qualify as a victim of medical malpractice unless it also meets one of the following criteria:
- Negligence due to a lack of professional qualifications (the doctor was not qualified to practice at the level they did)
- Negligence during diagnosing (the doctor made an incorrect diagnosis)
- Negligence that resulted in the death of the patient (this is often referred to as wrongful death)
Medical malpractice occurs when healthcare providers, such as physicians and nurses, fail to provide quality care by falling below their state's accepted medical standards and practices, resulting in injury or loss of life.
It can be used interchangeably with medical malpractice. Still, it may also include cases where any healthcare provider fails to meet certain guidelines, including doctors, dentists, pharmacists, emergency response medical technicians, therapists, and other healthcare professionals.
Common Injuries Resulting from Medical Malpractice at Northern Illinois Facilities
Medical malpractice is defined as the failure of physicians or care staff to act within the bounds of duty of care. Every doctor has the duty of taking every possible precaution to ensure their patients' safety and correctly respond when complications arise.
The failure to act appropriately can result in severe injuries or death. It is within the legal rights of patients and their families to seek compensation for the cost of treating these injuries or for wrongful death in the event their loved one passes away due to a medical error.
Typical forms of medical malpractice and negligence cases include the following:
- Surgical errors requiring revisionary procedures or resulting in severe complications: These cases can include complications that result from defective implants, the use of defective devices during the procedure, or human errors, such as making an incision in the wrong location and then failing to notice.
- Failure to provide an accurate diagnosis: In some cases, doctors either provide the wrong diagnosis or don't provide any diagnosis at all. When you receive treatment for the wrong condition or are falsely given a clean bill of health, these errors can have drastic consequences.
- Prescription or medication errors: Doctors may prescribe medications without first confirming that they will not interact with the medications you are already taking or the food you regularly enjoy. They may also prescribe the wrong dose, or nursing staff may administer your medicine improperly during a hospital stay. The impact of these errors varies from minor discomfort to life-threatening complications.
- Failure to prevent or treat infections: Hospitals are becoming home to dangerous bacteria with growing immunity to the medicines we rely on to treat them. It is becoming more common for patients undergoing surgical procedures to suffer from life-threatening infections, and surgeons and hospital staff members must take specific precautions to limit the spread of infection and to identify symptoms quickly. Many infections are also the result of unsanitary conditions throughout each patient's recovery.
Diagnostic Medical Malpractice Accidents & Injuries
There are three categories for diagnostic malpractice include:
- Diagnostic errors include incorrect or misdiagnosed symptoms leading to ineffective treatment or delayed diagnosis.
- Delays in evaluating patient symptoms
- Faulty equipment used during the diagnosis process (MRI machine problems are a perfect example)
- Lack of proper knowledge regarding the patient's condition
The CDC reports that diagnostic errors can lead to significant injuries, including increased pain and suffering, extended hospital stays, permanent injury or disability, additional surgeries needed to fix mistakes made by medical staff, and even death.
Hospitals can also be held liable for damages when physicians make diagnostic mistakes in their employment.
For example, suppose you were diagnosed with a condition resulting in permanent injury or disability but would have received effective treatment had the physician made an accurate diagnosis on the first visit. In that case, you may be able to receive compensation for your medical bills and other damages.
- Breach of duty: This includes failing to take a "standard, reasonable" amount of care during your treatment. Failing to diagnose a patient with an illness or failing to make a correct diagnosis even after the proper testing has been ordered could be malpractice.
- Misdiagnosis: A doctor may fail to identify the problem correctly and prescribe treatment appropriate for another condition. Visiting your doctor complaining of knee pain and being diagnosed with arthritis when the injury is a meniscus tear could be malpractice.
If your health care providers fail to order an appropriate test, delay a diagnosis or make an incorrect diagnosis, which results in more damage than would have occurred if not for the delay, it could be considered diagnostic malpractice.
It is important to note that these examples do not mean you were misdiagnosed. For example, imagine you go to the emergency room with a heart attack, and it is determined that a capsule of blood is blocked.
The doctor says you have a blockage in one of your coronary arteries and decides to do a balloon angioplasty. Still, he notices another blockage in another artery during the test, so he performs a double-balloon angioplasty.
A local medical malpractice lawyer would not prove that the first misdiagnosis was negligent, but the second one, which resulted in additional damage, may very well be.
Whenever a surgeon makes a critical error in judgment during a surgical procedure or a doctor or other health care provider prescribes incorrect treatment for your medical condition, you have the right to bring a medical malpractice lawsuit for any damages that result from your injuries.
The Waukegan, IL medical malpractice injury attorneys of Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers LLC understand the physical and financial toll that medical errors take on you and your families and work with our clients to ensure the maximum recovery possible.
We've provided information below on the largest hospitals in the Waukegan area so that you may understand the critical contributing factors to medical malpractice cases more clearly. Contact our medical malpractice injury attorneys serving Waukegan for a free review of your legal rights and options.
Our personal injury law firm handles monetary compensation cases in Chicago and surrounding areas, including Cook County, DuPage County, and Lake County. We are ready to serve you and your family.
Evaluating Hospitals in the Northern Illinois Area
Three hospitals serve the greater northern Illinois area, and our personal injury firm has compiled the following data to highlight each hospital's shortfalls.
One of the essential steps in arguing for hospital or nursing home negligence is establishing a pattern or history of questionable behavior. This information can be valuable when building your case.
Vista Medical Center East
1324 North Sheridan Road
Waukegan, IL 60085
Vista Medical Center East is a level two trauma center approved to provide emergency pediatric care. However, one of the most alarming concerns about this facility is its high mortality rate among heart attack patients.
Illinois's average mortality rate for heart attack patients is 48.21 out of every 1,000, while Vista Medical Center East has experienced a heart attack death rate of 95.63 out of 1,000. About 17.3% of heart attack victims released from this hospital are readmitted less than thirty days later, and most of those readmitted do not survive.
Only 53% of patients surveyed would recommend this facility to others, and 34% stated that their rooms and bathing areas were not properly sanitized. Yet, sanitation is one of the most effective means of preventing the spread of infections and infectious diseases.
Therefore, when patients are diagnosed with infections, it is essential to establish whether the facility took preventative measures, and this is an area of concern for Vista Medical.
The final concern was that only four out of ten patients felt they understood their treatment and proceeded with home care once they were released. When patients are unclear about their treatment and what steps they need to take after discharge, it can result in readmission later.
Advocate Condell Medical Center
801 South Milwaukee Avenue<
Libertyville, IL 60048
Advocate Condell Medical Center is part of the Advocate Health Care System and is designated as a level one trauma unit approved to provide emergency pediatric care. In addition, this facility is also designated as a level two perinatal center.
Advocate Condell maintains readmission rates in line with state and national averages, and it is one of the best places to receive a hip transplant. In addition, its hip replacement mortality rate is significantly lower than both the state and national average.
The complaints leveraged against this facility include a disastrous history of blood clot treatment. Only 80% of patients received medications and treatments needed to prevent a blood clot from all patients undergoing surgical procedures. In addition, approximately 83% of patients suffering from blood clots were discharged with medications designed to treat their clots or instructions on using them safely.
Overall, 74% of the patients surveyed said they would highly recommend this facility to their family and friends. In addition, 80% of patients felt that their rooms were kept clean, statistically higher than the state average but left room for improvement.
Northwestern Medicine Lake Forest Hospital
660 North Westmoreland Road
Lake Forest, IL 60045
Lake Forest Hospital is a level two trauma unit that provides perinatal care and emergency pediatric care. Its readmission and mortality rates are just below the state average, and roughly 70% of patients would recommend this facility to their family or friends. However, its areas of concern are similar to those of Condell in that it has a poor record of preventing and managing blood clots.
Only 73% of patients undergoing surgical procedures received adequate treatment to prevent the development of blood clots, and 10% of patients who developed clots had not been treated within two days of the clot's formation. This trend continues for stroke patients - only 78% of those suffering from a stroke received blood-thinning medications within two days of being admitted to the hospital.
About 76% of stroke patients were provided written instructions on managing their conditions before treatment, including cases in which the information was provided to caregivers.
Only 70% of patients felt that their rooms and bathing areas were kept clean, and only 58% felt that hospital staff explained how their medications worked. Finally, just 45% of patients felt that they understood their care and continued their recovery at home upon discharge.
Medical Malpractice Cases
Medical malpractice is a leading cause of death, and according to Johns Hopkins Hospital, it ranks third behind only heart disease and cancer. Medical mistakes account for more than 250 thousand per year, with National Center For State Courts reporting that less than 5% are filed in court as personal injury cases from 2009-2014 rates have been steady at about 3%.
Medical errors can result in horrific injuries that ruin lives. These issues are long-lasting and dangerous, and sometimes fatal to the patient's health and others around them who may be involved with their treatment or recovery process, like family members.
A medical malpractice case arises when medical professionals use poor judgment during routine care, leading to unnecessary deaths. In addition, both survivors suffer untold damages from past emotional events, including chronic pain caused by traumatic experiences such as physical disruption at periods where they were supposed to feel safe again.
Medical malpractice litigation is the most effective way to protect patients from experiencing inadequate or negligent medical care. But, unfortunately, hospitals all over America are not providing standard treatments at their facilities, which leaves many vulnerable people unprotected in need of help that they might never receive due to careless attitudes on behalf of hospital staff. Moreover, there isn't enough time for repairs before a patient's next visit due to bad situations like faulty equipment sightings.
Hiring Waukegan Medical Malpractice Lawyers
Most medical errors or malpractice victims are unaware of their rights and never seek legal action against the people who caused them harm.
Undergoing additional procedures and receiving treatment for injuries resulting from medical errors can be expensive. However, you should not be forced to take on these costs.
The Waukegan personal injury attorneys of Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers LLC routinely handle these types of cases. As a result, they have successfully recovered compensation for clients so that they could cover the cost of their medical treatment, loss of income, out-of-pocket expenses, and rehabilitation.
We have recovered damages for the pain and suffering for clients who have endured due to their injuries. Contact our Waukegan office now to arrange a free initial consultation with one of our medical malpractice lawyers to learn more about your legal options and get started on your case.
Each medical malpractice attorney accepts all personal injury cases and wrongful death suits on a contingency basis. This agreement ensures that you will never be required to pay us for legal advice and representation unless we collect compensation on your behalf.
Call our Chicago, IL law firm for additional information on our personal injury attorney profiles, legal services, and office location.