When people contemplate medical malpractice lawsuits, they typically think they arise out of incompetent care provided by a doctor. In Maryland, though, other health care providers, including nurses, can be held liable for the harm their negligence causes patients to suffer. If you were hurt due to the carelessness of a nurse, you might be able to pursue nursing malpractice claims, and you should confer with an attorney as soon as possible. The skillful Baltimore medical malpractice attorneys of Arfaa Law Group have ample experience helping people injured by careless nurses pursue damages for their losses. If we represent you, we will zealously pursue any damages you may be able to recover.Common Examples of Nursing Malpractice
Generally, any instance in which a nurse’s reckless behavior causes a patient to suffer harm could constitute malpractice, but some situations occur more frequently than others. For example, nurses often administer patients the incorrect medication, or the wrong dose of the right medicine, causing the patient to suffer adverse side effects. Similarly, if a nurse mishandles or misuses a piece of medical equipment, or fails to use such equipment when it is appropriate, it can cause grave injuries. In some cases, a patient will suffer harm because a nurse failed to alert the treating physician regarding a critical development, such as a sudden change in a patient’s vital signs, a fall, or alarming symptoms.Proving Nursing Malpractice Caused a Party’s Harm
Nurses that injure patients usually do so inadvertently rather than intentionally. As such, plaintiffs in nursing malpractice cases generally will assert negligence claims against the defendants. In order to show a nurse should be held liable for negligence, a plaintiff must first establish that the nurse owed the plaintiff a duty.
The duty a nurse owes a patient is to provide treatment that comports with the standard of care, which is the care that a reasonable professional would offer when faced with the same scenario. The plaintiff then has to prove the defendant breached the standard of care in some way. For example, if the standard requires a nurse to alert a doctor when a patient’s heart rate falls below a certain level, and the defendant failed to do so, it may be considered a breach of the standard of care.
A plaintiff in a nursing malpractice case not only has to show that the defendant breached the standard of care but also that the breach caused the plaintiff to suffer actual harm. In most nursing malpractice cases, the plaintiff will need to hire an expert to offer testimony to the judge or jury regarding what the standard requires and the manner in which the defendant breached the standard, and to connect the defendant’s behavior with the harm the plaintiff ultimately suffered.Damages Recoverable in Nursing Malpractice Cases
A plaintiff that sets forth compelling arguments may be awarded compensation for both the financial and intangible losses caused by the defendant’s negligence. Financial harm may include out-of-pocket expenses, lost wages, and the cost of past and future medical care. Intangible injuries may be the mental anguish, suffering, and emotional distress endured due to the physical damages caused by the defendant. If the plaintiff was married when the harm occurred their spouse may be able to recover damages as well, for the loss of the plaintiff’s services and companionship.Consult an Experienced Baltimore Attorney
Nurses perform a variety of health services, but if they fail to exercise adequate care, they may harm, rather than help, their patients. If you were injured by a negligent nurse, you might be able to pursue nursing malpractice claims in a civil lawsuit, and you consult a lawyer as soon as possible. The experienced Baltimore lawyers of Arfaa Law Group are well versed in what it takes to prove nurses should be held liable for the losses caused by their carelessness, and if you hire us, we will work tirelessly on your behalf. We frequently represent parties in medical malpractice cases in Baltimore, where our office is located. You can contact us via our form online or by calling us at 410-889-1850 to set up a meeting.