It is important to understand how to advocate for one’s self, but it is also unfortunate that this is even necessary for patients in Delaware. Medical errors are often preventable and yet contribute to negative health outcomes all the time. Patients who are concerned about possible errors or who want to be proactive about preventing them can still take simple steps toward protecting themselves, though.
Being one’s own advocate
Preventative protocols help prevent the transmission of infections and diseases in medical settings. Despite this, some medical providers overlook the important step of washing their hands before treating a patient. To avoid contracting a preventable infection, it is a good idea to ask providers to wash their hands if one did not witness them doing so. Patients can also:
- Request to look at their medical charts
- Ask for guidance to understand their charts
- Ask about medication, known side effects and any alternative treatments
Obligations of medical facilities
Whether in a hospital, doctor’s office or other health care setting, those in charge of these facilities have an obligation to protect patients. One of the first steps to doing so is to hire the best possible staff. However, this alone is not enough to protect patients. Facilities must also provide regular ongoing training, maintain adequate staff levels and implement strict health care protocols that have proven track records for preventing medical errors.
Delaware patients deserve to be respected and treated with care by medical professionals. When medical providers drop the ball and make avoidable medical errors, it is the patients who end up suffering. Although there is nothing that can undo this harm, successfully navigating a medical malpractice claim to completion can be an effective way to secure compensation for documented monetary damages.