Often, whenever our New York birth injury lawyer office gets hit with people wanting to sue for malpractice, the blame falls squarely on the doctors. It’s happened so often that we’ve gotten some of our staff at Duffy & Duffy wondering if nurses get sued for malpractice too. Well, the answer to that question is yes, nurses are not above the law when it comes to committing malpractice.
Nursing malpractice is whenever a nurse fails to perform their medical duties, and their patient is harmed as a result. These failures can include issuing the wrong drug, not speaking to a doctor if a problem has arisen or neglecting a patient during their time of need. Not every single mistake is malpractice, but often it happens whenever a competent nurse would have made a different decision in the same situation.
For example, our birth injury lawyers have seen a lot of nurses get sued with malpractice cases because they do not take action when it is required. If the patient under their care has a medical emergency, then nurses need to take immediate steps to fix the situation. If they do not do this, or do not notify the doctor’s whenever something is really wrong, then they may have committed malpractice.
No matter the reason why a certain nurse committed malpractice, the case tends to revolve around who was responsible for the malpractice injury. Either the doctor or the hospital is to blame for the malpractice of a nurse, and depending on who is found at fault, they are the ones who become the defendant in the case.
Hospitals can be legally responsible for nursing malpractice in several scenarios, such as if the nurse was an employee at the hospital, if the nurse was fulfilling a duty when the patient was hurt, or a doctor who was not employed by the hospital was the one in control of the nurse.
If attending doctors who are employees of the hospital were supervising the nurse at the time of the malpractice, they can become the defendant for the malpractice. If the doctor was present and had control to prevent the nurse’s mistake, but chose to do nothing, then they may be held liable.
For example, if a nurse was working under a surgeon and was responsible for administering a certain type of medication but got it wrong and injury was caused to the patient, then the hospital may be held responsible. However, if the nurse had to go through everything with the head surgeon in charge and the doctor knew about the wrong medication, but didn’t correct the nurse or attempt to stop the treatment, then the doctor may be held responsible for the case,
There are a few other situations that will change who ends up with the responsibility for the malpractice. However, regardless of who pays, our team of birth injuries lawyers would fight for you if the malpractice ended up hurting you or your baby. Both sides of the trial will need to get medical experts who will share what a competent nurse would have done in the situation.
Before a trial can even begin, nursing malpractice must be proved. In some cases, it is very easy to prove malpractice, but with other cases such as neglect, it can be harder to prove that the nurse did not uphold the various standards of care. That is where you see the difference in law firms. Duffy & Duffy, PLLC has been at the forefront of battling for patient rights for over 25 years. Birth injury cases tend to be very complex and may require a lot of specialization.
Our New York birth injury attorneys look at the four basic building blocks of the medical malpractice cases. That a standard of care has been established, that the standard of care was breached, that a line can be drawn from the actions or inactions of the nurse to your injury, and that the damage sustained can be connected to the nurse’s malpractice.
For example, let’s say that a pregnant woman came into the hospital and was exhibiting signs of high blood pressure before giving birth. A nurse decided to give medication to lower the blood pressure, not noticing that the medication was harmful to the baby. As a result, the baby was born with birth injuries.
For the four blocks, a duty of care was established: The medical staff on hand were going to make sure that the birth of the child went smoothly. That care was breached due to the improper use of medications. A line can be drawn from the improper medication to the birth injuries of the baby, and it can be easy to prove that the specific medication caused a specific birth injury.
It could be argued that the giving of that harmful medication is preventable, and that a competent medical professional would have made a different choice in that same situation.
So, in that case, the mother would be able to sue for nursing malpractice. Depending on the situations around the nurse at the time, either the hospital or the doctor would pay the mother’s claim if she won her court case.
Nursing malpractice, especially going around who pays for the malpractice case, can be very complicated if you don’t understand all the medical laws and jargon. Additionally, depending on the situation at hand, more factors could be introduced. Whenever you or your child has been hurt by medical malpractice, you need to reach out to Duffy & Duffy. Our team of birth injury attorneys can cut through all the noise and get you the best support for your case.
We have experience determining medical malpractice and looking at the various facts of the case. Our team certainly understands that having a child with birth injuries, especially those injuries that could have been prevented is something that no parent wants to live with. We will fight to get you the best results from your medical malpractice suit, no matter who pays.
If you have a medical malpractice suit directed against a nurse, and it relates to the birth of your child, don’t fight alone. Our team understands that this is a particularly tough time for you emotionally, and our top-notch team of birth injury lawyers may be able to help you out.
Each case is unique and it’s important that you understand that rights given to you under the law. Speak to someone who can guide you and provide you with an in depth analysis of your case. Find a true patient advocate who can assist you and your family in this difficult process.
We will fight with you every step of the way until you get the justice you deserve, and while it might not turn back the clock it can help your child live a new life. Please contact the lawyers at Duffy & Duffy online so we can help you, or you can call for a free consultation at (516) 394-4200 and we will pick up.