Medical malpractice troubles patients and their families not only in Louisville, Kentucky, but also across the rest of the country. In order to educate people about how they can keep themselves safe from incidents of medical malpractice, the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality has provided some preventive measures that patients and families can adopt when availing treatment. These basic steps are known as the Five Steps to Safer Health Care.
The first step is to ask the health care provided questions whenever a patient or family member is in doubt about any particular treatment or procedure. Next, it is important for patients and families to be fully aware of all the medications that are being or have been taken and all the procedures that have been performed. They should also let the health care providers know about any allergies and side effects that the patient is suffering or may have suffered from.
Patients and family members also need to understand the results of the various tests and procedures that have been performed so far on a patient and those that may be performed in the future. If someone is not able to understand the results independently, help from a doctor should be sought immediately. If treatment for a medical condition requires hospitalization, patients and families should speak with a doctor and figure out which hospital is best suited for the kind of treatment that the patient requires.
The fifth, and probably the most critical step, is when a patient requires surgery. Surgeries have the potential to be deadly, which calls for absolutely clear communication between the patient, family members, and the health care provider. All risks should be kept in mind and only then should the patients and family members sign on the dotted line, giving consent for the surgery.
Unfortunately, many people take all of these precautions and nonetheless end up as victims of medical malpractice. Thankfully, there are laws in place in Kentucky and the rest of the country that provide relief to victims of medical malpractice. However, medical malpractice claims can easily be complicated.