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Massachusetts Medical Malpractice Lawyer | Lawyer Source 360

In today’s world of ever-advancing medical technology, the sad truth is that human error still plays a large part in the treatment patients receive. As a result, unnecessary injuries and deaths occur at a sometimes alarming rate. When this happens, patients or their families may seek compensation by filing a medical malpractice suit using a Massachusetts medical malpractice attorney against those they hold responsible. However, there are many variables that come into play when doing so. To gain a better understanding of medical malpractice lawsuits, let’s examine some interesting statistics.

Massachusetts Medical Malpractice Lawyer

According to the New England Journal of Medicine, just over 60 percent of people who file medical malpractice lawsuits are women with an average age of 40. Only about 12 percent of plaintiffs were patients age 65 or older, but slightly more than 20 percent of named plaintiffs were newborns. Of the doctors in the New England Journal of Medicine report who were sued most often, 20 percent were OBGYNs, while general surgeons and primary care doctors were close behind at 17 and 16 percent respectively.

Injuries sustained during inpatient procedures

While many people think all medical malpractice suits in Massachusetts (MA) result in the awarding of millions of dollars, that is not always true. According to cases analyzed by the Journal of the American Medical Association, patients suing for injuries sustained during inpatient procedures received an average of $363,000, while those cases involving outpatient stays were awarded $290,000.

settlement or jury verdict

Because most MA medical malpractice cases can be very complex, it takes a great amount of time to file suit and have the case resolved. On average, the U.S. Department of Justice found the average patient waited almost 17 months after an injury to file a lawsuit. Afterwards, it was found to take an additional 27 months for the case to reach a resolution, either through a settlement or jury verdict.

Medical malpractice lawsuits in Massachusetts

Surprising to many people, plaintiffs do not always win their medical malpractice lawsuits in Massachusetts. The New England Journal of Medicine noted that of all medical malpractice lawsuits that went to court, plaintiffs won only slightly more than 20 percent of their cases. However, in cases where an out-of-court settlement was reached, the percentage of plaintiffs winning their cases increased to 61 percent.

While there is never any guarantee as to how a medical malpractice lawsuit will end, those who feel they have been injured due to the negligence of others they trusted with their care should speak to a MA medical malpractice attorney or a Massachusetts medical malpractice lawyer to discuss their options.

Medical mistakes occur in Massachusetts

When medical mistakes occur in Massachusetts, the results can sometimes be fatal. Contrary to what many in the health care field say, many experts feel there are far more cases of medical malpractice deaths that are admitted to by health care providers. When examining the latest statistics and studies conducted on the matter, it becomes clear the numbers quoted by the health care industry are far too low.

While in 1999 the Institute of Medicine reported an estimated 98,000 patients die yearly from medical malpractice, in 2010 that number nearly doubled to 180,000 after a study conducted by the Office of Inspector General for Health and Human Services. While that number itself is startling, new numbers from the Journal of Patient Safety make any previous numbers pale in comparison. According to the Journal’s study, it’s estimated that between 210,000-440,000 patients die each year as a result of medical malpractice. If these numbers are correct, that would make medical malpractice fatalities the third-leading cause of death in the United States, trailing only heart disease and cancer.

Based on the data, most of the fatalities result from errors occurring during or after surgery, improper medications being given to patients, improper dosages of medications being given, or the doctor failing to order the necessary tests needed to correctly diagnose the patient’s condition. In many hospitals, the number of medical malpractice fatalities increased with doctors who were treating far more patients who were on Medicare. While the reasons for this were not always clear, experts from the National Institute of Health noted that many of the patients were older and suffered from serious conditions prior to being admitted, so it was possible these patients did not receive as high a level of care as younger patients on other insurance plans.

Researchers at Johns Hopkins Hospital, after conducting their own study of medical malpractice fatalities, concluded that many of the deaths resulted from a lack of transparency and communication among doctors, nurses, and other staff. Improper medications, incorrect dosages of medications, and failing to have certain tests conducted were all due many times to a lack of staff communication.

While no two medical cases are exactly the same, those who have had family members die from what they believe to be medical malpractice should speak with an experienced Massachusetts medical malpractice attorney or a MA medical malpractice lawyer as soon as possible to learn what legal options they have available to them.

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