Failure to Diagnose COVID-19
The COVID-19 pandemic changed life as we know it, causing the long-term harm or death of millions of people. While treatment measures have developed and changed over the course of the pandemic, most individuals fared better when they received a prompt diagnosis. Sadly, many people were not so fortunate, and their doctor’s failure to diagnose COVID-19 caused them to suffer permanent losses. If you were harmed because your doctor neglected to diagnose you with COVID-19, you have the right to seek compensation, and you should speak to a lawyer about what evidence you must produce to demonstrate liability. At Arfaa Law Group, our seasoned Baltimore medical malpractice attorneys are proficient at handling challenging cases, and if you hire us, we will fight to help you seek the results you deserve.Consequences of the Failure to Diagnose COVID-19
COVID-19 causes severe respiratory symptoms, including cough, breathing problems, and shortness of breath, as well as fever, aches, loss of the senses of smell and taste, and headache. While some people with COVID-19 only suffer minor symptoms, others develop critical complications, including hypoxia, dyspnea, respiratory failure, shock, embolisms, and organ dysfunction. Many people who contract COVID-19 ultimately succumb to their symptoms.
Relatively early in the pandemic, tests were developed to determine if people were positive for COVID-19. Thus, the failure to diagnose COVID-19 is typically the result of a doctor disregarding a patient’s symptoms or assuming that they were caused by another illness, inadvertent errors during the administration of the test, or incorrect interpretation of test results. For some people, the consequences of a doctor’s failure to diagnose COVID-19 are dire, causing lifelong detriments or death.Liability for the Failure to Diagnose COVID-19
People who suffer harm due to a doctor’s failure to diagnose COVID-19 have the right to pursue damages via medical malpractice claims. In the majority of medical malpractice lawsuits, the plaintiff will aver that the defendant acted negligently. Under Maryland law, to prove a doctor’s negligence, a plaintiff must show that the defendant owed the plaintiff a duty. Usually, the duty owed is to abide by the standard of care, which is the treatment that a reasonable professional working in the same practice would offer in a similar situation. The plaintiff then must show that the defendant departed from the standard of care in some way. In most cases, the plaintiff must retain a medical expert to explain the applicable standard of care to the fact-finder and offer an opinion as to how the defendant failed to comply with the standard.
After establishing that the defendant breached the standard of care, the plaintiff must then prove that the breach proximately caused them to suffer actual losses. This means that the defendant’s failure to diagnose COVID-19 directly led to the plaintiff’s damages. While the failure may not be the sole cause of the plaintiff’s harm, it must be a primary factor in bringing it about. The plaintiff will most likely require expert testimony to link the defendant’s breach of the standard of care to the plaintiff’s harm as well. The defendant may argue that the plaintiff’s adverse outcome was inevitable due to the nature of COVID-19 and may present expert testimony to that effect. As such, which party the judge or jury rules in favor of will most likely depend on which party presents the most compelling evidence.Confer With a Knowledgeable Baltimore Attorney
Many people who contracted COVID-19 suffered severe complications, and their prognosis depended, in part, on the timeliness of their diagnosis. If you or someone you love were hurt by a doctor’s failure to diagnose COVID-19, you could confer with an attorney to evaluate your possible claims. The knowledgeable Baltimore lawyers of Arfaa Law Group are well-versed in what it takes to prove negligent doctors should be held accountable for the harm they cause, and if you engage our services, we will gather the evidence needed to provide you with a strong chance of a favorable outcome. We frequently assist people in medical malpractice lawsuits in Baltimore, where we have an office. You can reach us via our form online or by calling (410) 889-1850 to set up a free and confidential consultation.