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Did you know that the American Medical Association has found that medical malpractice accounts for as many as 225,000 deaths a year? What might be even more surprising is to find out that it is the third leading cause of death in the United States - following only heart disease and cancer. It's a serious issue.

Often times, you may very well know that you've been injured or that you did not receive the best care possible, but you may be questioning whether or not this lack of care reaches the level of medical malpractice. I'm here to tell you that it very well may.

Medical malpractice simply means that a healthcare provider made a choice not to put patient safety first. Here are some quick ways to tell if your injury was the result of medical malpractice:

1) Inexperience.  Was your healthcare provider experienced enough to manage your health? Of course, there are brilliant medical interns, volunteers, and the like. But, they need to be supervised by a more experienced provider, and should be consulting with their supervisor on a regular basis. If you find that they mostly managed your health on their own, your injury may have been a direct result.

2) Doctors not consulting the right specialists. Especially if your condition is rare, your doctor should have been consulting with a specialist to make sure your plan of treatment is the best one for you. Did it take a long time for you to be diagnosed? Do you think a specialist would have been able to diagnose you quicker and start your treatment sooner?

3) Doctors not having all of the available information. Did it take forever to get your medical records from your previous provider? Did they use and follow up on test results? Did your doctor ask you the relevant questions, or did they mostly tell you what they believe you're suffering from? Sometimes doctors make assumptions based on symptoms they've seen before, but especially if the diagnosis turns out wrong, that decision may be medical malpractice.

4) Did they tell you about alternative diagnoses and treatments? It is your choice what course of treatment you take. So, if the doctor did not bother to inform you of alternatives, you did not have that choice. It is their job to let you know what options are open to you.

Lastly, if you realize that your injury was the result of medical malpractice, make sure to contact an experienced attorney that can properly handle your case. At Donahoe Kearney, we would be happy to send you free books, guides and reports that will tell you everything you need to know before talking to an attorney. There are lots of ways to become a victim of the system - make sure you have a team that is on your side.  


Frank R. Kearney, Attorney-at-Law
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Experienced DC Workers' Comp, Long Term Disability & Accident Lawyer
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