What Is A Failure To Diagnose?
Sometimes, doctors and other health care professionals are negligent and cause their patients to suffer even greater harm. One example of this negligence is a failure to diagnose. When doctors fail to diagnose a patient, it could have disastrous results. For patients with chronic illnesses such as cancer or heart disease, a failure to diagnose may even be fatal. Any time a person experiences harm as a result of a failure to diagnose, he or she should speak to an experienced medical malpractice attorney as soon as possible.
Failure To Diagnose Is A Common Form Of Medical Malpractice
Cases that involve failure to diagnose fall under the umbrella of medical malpractice. Doctors are responsible for being able to properly identify and diagnose a condition based on a patient’s symptoms. When a patient is incorrectly diagnosed, it often leads to the condition becoming worse and sometimes, it prevents any chance of recovery. If this has happened to you or someone you love, you deserve to pursue compensation for your losses with the assistance of the Willoughby Law Firm, Inc..
Proving A Failure To Diagnose Is Complex
Although doctors are ultimately responsible for ensuring that patients receive the best care possible, they are not always held liable for a failure to diagnose. This is often the case when the patient cannot adequately prove his or her case. There are three elements of proof necessary in cases involving a failure to diagnose:
- The first element is that the patient must prove that there was a doctor-patient relationship. This does not necessarily mean that the doctor treated the patient for a long period of time or even that the doctor and patient knew each other. Registering in an emergency room is enough to establish a doctor-patient relationship.
- The second element of proof is that the doctor was negligent. For example, if a patient complained of very general symptoms, such as feeling more tired than usual, the doctor may state that the patient may just be simply coming down with a sickness, such as a cold or flu. The doctor may recommend that the patient comes back in a week if the symptoms have not improved. This would likely not constitute a failure to diagnose. If, on the other hand, the patient complained of being tired all the time, losing interest in things he or she once enjoyed and feeling sad all the time, that should alert the doctor to possible depression. If the doctor still said the patient was likely just coming down with something and sent the patient home without proper treatment for depression, that would likely constitute a failure to diagnose.
- The third element is that the doctor’s failure to diagnose led to the worsening of the patient’s condition.
Did A Doctor Fail To Diagnose Your Condition? Call Willoughby Law Firm, Inc.
A failure to diagnose has disastrous consequences for patients and those who have been a victim of it may be able to take action. However, these cases are not easy to prove on your own. Attorney Markus Willoughby is an accomplished attorney who has an Avvo 10.0 “Superb” rating in the category of “Superb Attorney in Medical Malpractice. He is also a member of the National Trial Lawyers Top 100 Attorneys and is repeatedly selected for inclusion in the list of Northern California Super Lawyer and among the “Top 5 Percent of Attorneys in Northern California.”