When people think of malpractice cases, they usually think only doctors are subject to it. Medical malpractice, however, covers all medical professionals and if your nurse was neglectful in their care of you and it led to serious harm, you can file a malpractice claim against them. Nonetheless, consulting with an experienced NY medical malpractice lawyer from The Law Offices of Joseph Lichtenstein should be done before you make and file a claim.
Nurses can now be charged with malpractice for several reasons. One of them is that the modern legal definition of liability has been expanded for all professions and more people can be held accountable these days. The result is that nurses, along with other members of the healthcare team, are held to a medical standard of care. Additionally, modern health care expands the responsibilities of nurses, giving them more autonomy and responsibility, which exposes them to increased chances of making mistakes.
As medical malpractice lawyers around Long island, NY would tell you, nursing error or malpractice is still based on the same ground as doctors; if a nurse does not fulfill the duties a normal, responsible nurse should meet and this results in an injury to a patient, then they are liable for the damage. A good example of this is when a nurse fails to take action or report something when it is needed. One of a nurse’s duties is to monitor patients; if they encounter a patient in distress or find that something is wrong with the patient, they need to take action immediately and report what’s happening to the doctor in charge. Neglect also covers not detecting that something is wrong and medication errors.
The main difference between a typical malpractice case against a doctor and one filed against a nurse is whether someone higher in the organization is liable. The usual targets for additional liability are the medical institution that employs the nurse or the doctor in charge. If the nurse, an employee of a certain medical institution, was on-duty when the patient was injured while no doctor was present, the institution can be held liable. If a doctor was present, however, then the fault is often passed on to him or her. The only time a nurse can be directly sued is when they directly went against hospital policies or the doctor’s orders.
To untangle this mess of liabilities and get your just compensation, hire a good malpractice lawyer to assess your case and assist you in filing it.
(Source: Nurses, Negligence, and Malpractice, Lippincott Nursing Center)