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Why do medical misdiagnoses happen?

On Behalf of | Jun 14, 2022 | Medical Malpractice

When you are taken ill, you trust that your healthcare provider will accurately diagnose your condition and prescribe and administer appropriate treatment so you can recover from your illness. After all, healthcare providers owe their patients a legal duty to prove acceptable standards of care. 

However, it is not uncommon for a doctor to misdiagnose a patient. A misdiagnosis can be quite dangerous as it can lead to catastrophic damages. If you are a victim of medical misdiagnosis, it helps to understand the legal options at your disposal so you can pursue the responsible party for damages. 

Common causes of a misdiagnosis

Basically, a misdiagnosis happens when the healthcare provider gets your injury or illness wrong. Generally speaking, that can affect your health negatively in two different ways: You may not get the treatment you need for your condition, which can make it worse, and you could get treatment for a condition you don’t have, which can be a disaster.

Several factors contribute to this form of medical malpractice. Here are some of them:

Poor training

Poor training at any level can result in the healthcare provider failing to capture the right skills necessary for providing the expected standard of care. A doctor or a nurse who is not properly trained may lack the skills they need to accurately diagnose their condition. 

Understaffing

It is not uncommon for a hospital to be understaffed. Understaffing results in doctor fatigue, and this can easily lead to mistakes such as inaccurate diagnoses of the patients’ conditions. 

Failure to test or refer

Wrong test procedures can easily result in missed information, and thus misdiagnosis. Similarly, a primary care physician who relies on their own experience instead of referring a complicated patient to a specialist can easily make a misdiagnosis.

A wrong diagnosis can have far-reaching implications for the patient. Find out how you can pursue a medical malpractice lawsuit if you or someone you know has been victimized.

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