If you are concerned that you or a loved one received substandard care in a Louisiana hospital, you unfortunately are not alone. Medical malpractice is far more common than it should be. From emergency rooms to delivery rooms, doctors and nurses make mistakes in hospitals every single day. Yet, hospitals will often refuse to acknowledge their providers’ mistakes—and they will do so despite being well aware of the risks involved.
Why is this the case? The answer is simple: Hospitals don’t want to get sued for medical malpractice. Medical malpractice claims are expensive, and they can harm hospitals’ reputations. In most cases, hospitals would rather protect themselves than do right by their patients. They are driven by profits, and they will go to great lengths to avoid being held accountable when things go wrong.
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7 Steps to Take if You Suspect Medical Malpractice in a Louisiana Hospital
With this in mind, if you believe you may have a medical malpractice claim against a Louisiana hospital, there are some important steps you should take promptly. These steps include:
1. Seek Treatment from a Different (and Unaffiliated) Medical Facility
If you have concerns about medical malpractice, one of the biggest mistakes you can make is ignoring your (or your loved one’s) medical needs. While it can be hard to place your trust in another health care provider once your trust has been breached, there are quality doctors, and getting professional care needs to be your first priority.
When seeking treatment, it is important to go to a different medical facility. You should not go back to the hospital where you suspect you or your loved onereceived substandard care. It is also important to choose a facility that is not affiliated with the hospital in any way. We have good relationships with many quality doctors in Louisiana, and we can assist with finding a specialist who can provide the care you or your loved one needs and deserves.
2. Collect All Relevant Medical Bills and Records
If you can collect all of the records you have from the hospital, this will assist your attorney in assessing your legal rights. You don’t have to go back to the hospital and ask for copies, but you should spend some time gathering any records you already have. This includes medical records such as scans, test results, and prescriptions—as well as bills, statements of benefits, and other insurance-related documents.
If you don’t have everything, that’s okay. It can also be helpful to make a list of your appointments, or at least as many of your appointments as you can remember. If you have appointment confirmations or events stored in your phone, you can use these to help piece together a timeline of your (or your loved one’s) care at the hospital.
3. Take Notes Detailing All of Your Concerns
In addition to making a list of your appointments, it will be important for you to write down the reasons for your concerns. You should record any other relevant details as well. This will help ensure that you don’t forget anything during your free initial consultation. Try to write down the answers to questions like:
- When did you start to have concerns about medical malpractice?
- What triggered those concerns?
- In hindsight, were there any earlier warning signs?
- What did your doctor or nurse say when you expressed your concerns (if relevant)?
- Did you continue to go to the hospital after you began having concerns?
- What specifically do you think your provider or the hospital did wrong (if you know)?
- How long has it been since your last visit to the hospital?
4. Keep Up With Your (or Your Loved One’s) Medical Care
Moving forward, it will be extremely important for you to keep up with your (or your loved one’s) medical care. Not only will this be important for working toward remedying the effects of the malpractice, but it will also be important for pursuing your medical malpractice claim. Again, if you don’t know how to find a trustworthy medical provider in Louisiana, we can help you.
5. Keep Track of the Day-to-Day Effects of the Hospital’s Malpractice
If you have a medical malpractice claim against a hospital in Louisiana, you are entitled to just compensation for all of the day-to-day effects of your provider’s mistake. This includes effects that are financial (i.e. medical bills and lost earnings) and non-financial (i.e. emotional trauma, pain, and suffering) in nature.
To assist your attorney with proving your claim, you should do your best to keep track of these day-to-day effects. Start a folder where you keep your medical bills, receipts, and any documentation from your employer. Also, start a simple diary or journal where you write down the non-financial effects of the hospital’s malpractice on a daily basis. Pain levels, feelings of sadness or loneliness, missed birthdays and holidays, and deterioration of relationships are all losses for which financial compensation is available under Louisiana law.
6. Learn More about Filing a Medical Malpractice Claim in Louisiana
Louisiana’s medical malpractice laws are complicated, and you do not need to have an in-depth understanding of these laws in order to file a claim. But, it can be helpful to learn the basics. For an introduction to what you need to know, you can read: When Can You File a Claim for Malpractice in a Louisiana Emergency Room (ER)?
7. Talk to an Alexandria Hospital Medical Malpractice Attorney
Finally, if you have concerns about hospital medical malpractice for any reason, you should speak with an attorney. It costs nothing, and your initial consultation is completely risk-free. If you have a claim, you will need an attorney to pursue your claim for you, and you will need to rely on your attorney’s advice to give yourself the best chance of recovering the full compensation you deserve.
Request a Free Consultation with an Alexandria Hospital Medical Malpractice Attorney
Do you have questions about filing a medical malpractice claim against a hospital in Louisiana? If so, we encourage you to get in touch. For a free consultation with an experienced Alexandria hospital medical malpractice attorney, call 318-413-6191 or get in touch online now.