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Pennsylvania Medical Malpractice Lawsuits Against Hospitals in Philadelphia, Delaware & Montgomery Counties
Coronavirus (COVID-19) & Hospitals
During the coronavirus outbreak, hospitals in Pennsylvania are treating both coronavirus patients as well as non-coronavirus patients, such as stroke or heart attack patients or other patients with critical conditions.
Whether a hospital or doctor committed medical malpractice in the diagnosis or treatment of coronavirus depends on a variety of factors, including the timeline for a claim of delay in diagnosis and or the patient’s symptoms for a claim of delay in treatment. In current cases, hospital preparation and response are critical to survival of both the pandemic and non-pandemic patients. Reports across the country highlight a lack of preparedness by hospitals and the for-profit corporations that own and operate hospitals.
Patients who would normally be admitted for care at hospitals or emergency rooms in PA are being turned away due to the lack of space. This may result in worse outcomes for such patients, including death. For instance, a patient suffering from a stroke or heart attack may be misdiagnosed and released, only to suffer a massive event hours or days later. In these instances, hospitals may be liable for misdiagnosis and failure to treat.
If you believe you or a loved one received negligent medical care due to the coronavirus outbreak, it’s critical to seek help from a medical malpractice and personal injury law firm to identify the legal and medical issues as soon as possible.
Since 2016, the Morris Wilson law firm has achieved the Best Law Firm rating by U.S. News & World Report in the areas of Personal Injury Law and Medical Malpractice Law. We accept cases across Pennsylvania including Philadelphia, Montgomery and Delaware counties. Call for a FREE CONSULTATION. (610) 825-0500
Medical Malpractice in Hospitals
Medical malpractice in a Pennsylvania hospital or emergency room can involve a variety of mistakes and errors, such as:
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Hospital malpractice cases accepted across Pennsylvania, Philadelphia County, Montgomery County, Delaware County, Chester County and Bucks County. Call for a FREE consultation. (610) 825-0500
Suing a Hospital for Negligence – PA Medical Malpractice Law
Whether it’s a large hospital in Philadelphia or a local emergency room in Montgomery County, medical mistakes in hospital settings occur each year. Successful lawsuits for medical malpractice in a hospital or emergency room require proof of the following:
- the medical provider (hospital, doctor, etc.) owed the patient a duty of care,
- the medical provider’s diagnosis or treatment fell below the applicable standard of medical care, and
- a causal connection between the negligent conduct and the resulting harm.
Under Pennsylvania medical malpractice law, hospitals in Philadelphia, Delaware and Montgomery counties can be held liable on their own through a theory of corporate negligence, because of the act of an employee (doctor, specialist, nurse, etc.) or in some cases, an independent contractor.
These cases are slightly different than cases against physicians, although in many cases of malpractice at hospitals, both the treating doctor and the hospital will be named as defendants. In order to succeed in a medical malpractice case against a hospital, there must be evidence that the hospital, itself, or a hospital employee committed some act of negligence.
Hospital Liable – Violating Proper Standard of Care Owed to a Patient (Corporate Negligence Theory)
The first type of claims, where a hospital is held liable for its own acts or failure to act, aren’t typically specific to one employee. Rather, they involve a larger issue of corporate negligence, such as failure to take some action, failure to adhere to a protocol or procedure, failure to train or manage staff, etc.
Example – Delay in Stroke Treatment at a Philadelphia Hospital
For example, at a hospital in Philadelphia, a patient is admitted for possible stroke. The diagnosis is confirmed and the patient is confirmed to receive tPA, a life-saving blood thinner. Per the hospital’s own internal procedure, the patient is to receive tPA within 1 hour of being identified as eligible for tPA. However, the patient doesn’t receive tPA within the 1 hour window and instead, receives the medication well over 2 hours later. Here, the hospital failed to adhere to its own protocol and procedure and could be held negligent if that delay resulted in actual harm.
Hospital Liable for Acts of an Employee or Non-Employee (Ostensible Agent)
1. Hospital Malpractice Lawsuits – Acts of Actual Employees (Doctors, Specialists, Nurses)
In Pennsylvania, hospitals can be held liable for medical malpractice committed by actual employees, i.e., doctors, specialists, nurses, etc. This is a pretty basic principle of liability—an employer is liable for the acts of an employee that are committed during the employment.
For example, a hospital in Montgomery County could be held liable when a nurse-employee fails to monitor a patient admitted for a pulmonary embolism. Due to oversight, the nurse failed to perform the required monitoring of the patient’s vitals. Because the nurse failed to adhere to the applicable medical standard, the hospital could be held liable.
2. Hospital Malpractice Claims – Acts of Non-Employee Medical Providers (Ostensible Agents)
What about non-employees? Many doctors, specialists and surgeons aren’t employed by a hospital and instead have admitting or staff privileges. This is standard practice at hospitals in Philadelphia, Delaware County and Montgomery County. For example, a Delaware County surgeon has their own practice and has admitting privileges at a local hospital. If the surgeon commits negligence during a surgical procedure at the Delco hospital, the hospital might not automatically be liable. Liability of the hospital for the medical malpractice of the non-employee surgeon depends on the facts.
Pennsylvania court cases have clearly established that hospitals and emergency rooms can be liable for medical malpractice of independent contractors under a theory of ostensible agency which requires proof of either:
- a reasonably prudent person in the patient’s position would be justified in the belief that the care in question was being rendered by the hospital or its agents, or
- the care in question was advertised or otherwise represented to the patient as care being rendered by the hospital or its agents.
Compensation for Hospital Negligence & Medical Malpractice in Philadelphia, Delaware & Montgomery Counties
Patients, or in the event of death, surviving family members, can receive financial compensation for medical malpractice in Pennsylvania hospitals or emergency rooms. While the claims vary from case to case, injured plaintiffs can seek compensation for:
- pain and suffering,
- medical bills,
- lost wages due to a resulting disability, and
- out of pocket expenses.
Pennsylvania Medical Malpractice Law Firm – Hospital Cases in Philadelphia, Delaware & Montgomery Counties
Our law firm understands what’s at stake in medical malpractice cases and treats our clients with the utmost care and compassion. Our Pennsylvania medical malpractice lawyers have successfully handled medical malpractice cases against hospitals across Pennsylvania and helped patients and their families secure compensation. Call for a FREE consultation. (610) 825-0500
Last updated: July 1, 2021
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We Accept Medical Malpractice Cases Against Hospitals in the Philadelphia Area
Cases Also Accepted Across Pennsylvania
Chestnut Hill Hospital
Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania
Roxborough Memorial Hospital
Temple University Hospital
Thomas Jefferson University Hospital
Crozer-Chester Medical Center (Upland)
Delaware County Memorial Hospital (Drexel Hill, Upper Darby)
Springfield Hospital (Springfield)
Taylor Hospital (Ridley)
Abington Hospital (Abington, Lansdale)
Bryn Mawr Hospital (Bryn Mawr)
Einstein Medical (East Norriton, Elkins Park)
Holy Redeemer Hospital (Meadowbrook)
Lankenau Hospital (Wynnewood)
Suburban Community Hospital (Norristown)
Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia (Phila., West Chester, East Norriton, Meadowbrook, Doylestown, Langhorne, Sellersville, etc.)
St. Christopher's Hospital for Children
Shriner's Hospitals for Children
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