Surgical Error in Georgia
Securing fair and full compensation for victims of surgical malpractice and error
Surgical error cases against medical professionals can be complex, so it’s critical to have experienced counsel. Bell Law Firm has extensive trial experience and has recovered hundreds of millions for surgical negligence victims and their families.
What is surgical error or surgical malpractice?
A surgical error (also known as surgical malpractice) is an avoidable injury caused by a mistake during surgery and is not an anticipated risk of the surgery. Surgical errors are entirely preventable and can be avoided through proper training, protocol, and execution of the procedure. When a surgeon or other healthcare professional falls below the standard of care in surgical procedures, patients are at risk of serious harm.
Is surgical error considered malpractice in Georgia?
Not all surgical errors are considered medical malpractice. For a surgical error to be considered malpractice, the healthcare provider performing the procedure must fail to meet the standard of care, and the failure must cause harm or injury. If you are not harmed by a procedure that doesn’t go as planned, or the surgeon and their team maintained the proper standard of care, and you were injured anyway, you may not be able to recover for malpractice.
All surgeries involve some level of risk. Before surgery, patients are typically asked to sign an informed consent indicating they are aware of the associated risks with the specific surgery.
Informed consent consists of two interrelated elements. First, the patient must consent to the proposed intervention. Second, the doctor must inform the patient of the diagnosis when known, the nature and purpose of the recommended interventions, and the risks and expected outcomes of all options, including forgoing treatment (Code of Medical Ethics Opinion 2.1.1).
If you are questioning if you have a potential case, Bell Law Firm is available for a complimentary consultation.
What are some examples of surgical errors?
There are many different examples of surgical errors. These can include:
Can I sue my doctor and the hospital for malpractice after a surgical error?
To file a lawsuit for a surgical error, your surgeon must have failed to follow the standard of care, and their failure must have caused your injury. If this happened during your or a loved one’s surgical procedure, you might be able to pursue an injury claim.
What do I do if my surgery goes wrong?
- Find a qualified attorney with a history of success in surgical error cases and experience taking cases all the way to trial. The greater the harm, the more providers, employers and insurers will get involved. That’s when you need the most qualified, experienced counsel.
- Obtain and review medical records. Once the attorneys have evaluated your case, they should help you obtain certified medical records from the healthcare organization where the error or malpractice occurred. Qualified attorneys like Bell Law Firm will then review the medical records closely in consultation with medical experts to identify the precise actions and inactions that resulted in malpractice.
- Obtain an expert affidavit. Once you and your attorneys have identified what went wrong, the case should be evaluated by qualified healthcare professionals (experts) who are willing to testify on your behalf. Some states, including Georgia, will reject the lawsuit if it is not supported by an expert’s sworn affidavit.
- File the complaint. A complaint is a document that launches the lawsuit. It should tell your story clearly and thoroughly based on the medical records and other evidence. A complaint should also spell out each instance of alleged malpractice as a “claim” or a “cause of action.” That way, the court and defendants know you’ve done your homework and are backed by qualified attorneys and experts.
Keep in mind that every state has a deadline for filing a complaint. With narrow exceptions, Georgia requires filing within two years after the alleged malpractice harmed the patient.
How can surgeons avoid a malpractice lawsuit?
Hospitals, physician practice groups, and other healthcare organizations contain a wide variety of system failings that can harm patients. These can include:
- Failure to document important information
- Failure to communicate effectively
- Making decisions off the cuff when multiple factors need to be considered, and some can easily be ignored if the provider doesn’t consider other factors
- Failure to train and support individual providers
- Overworked healthcare providers
- A culture that does not encourage speaking up about patient care problems and does not acknowledge and learn from medical errors
To avoid potential malpractice lawsuits, surgeons first and foremost need to maintain the standard of care they’re taught to uphold. Beyond that, effective communication, critical thinking, and accurate documentation can go a long way in helping to prevent unnecessary surgical errors and malpractice.
Bell Law Firm is ready to help you receive full and fair compensation. If you believe you have a surgical error case, do not delay in contacting Bell Law Firm for a free consultation. Call us today at 404-249-6768 or email firstname.lastname@example.org for a free consultation.