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Malpractice Suits

Malpractice Suits

Malpractice in medicine occurs when a health care practitioner or provider fails to offer proper treatment, fails to take suitable action, or provides inadequate care to a patient, resulting in injury, disability, or death. Typically, negligence or malpractice entails a medical error. (Bookman & Zane, 2020). Healthcare professionals can make mistakes unknowingly in their daily practices. Medical errors are serious healthcare problems and can lead to the death of patients. All healthcare practitioners understand that medical errors cause serious problems that can pose threats to the safety of patients. Maintaining an environment that strives towards recognizing safety concerns and adopting viable alternatives, rather than retaining an attitude of criticism, embarrassment, and punishment, is one of the solutions. Healthcare organizations must foster a safe environment that prioritizes system improvement by perceiving medical errors as addressing problems (Youngberg, 2010). All healthcare staff must make healthcare safe for both patients and other healthcare staff.

From my estimation, failure to pursue further tests is a mistake in healthcare, depending on the circumstances. However, sometimes, the practitioner can fail to pursue further investigations due to human errors and patient-based issues. Following the case study, the physician performed routine and baseline tests for every patient. The patient also presented to the emergency department in a critical condition, where immediate treatment was provided. Besides, this patient had uncontrolled diarrhea, and baseline tests were the most important investigations for this case before any further tests. However, the routine tests were normal, and at this point, since the physician is a specialist, he was allowed to give the patient medication that he thought could help the patient. Unfortunately, the medications did not work, leading to the patient’s death. Perhaps the medical error the physician made was that he did not involve other healthcare personnel; he could have also ordered further tests to help diagnose the patient’s condition before giving the patient any medication and promoting the patient’s safety. However, using the physician was not the correct solution since he did routine tests. Considering the patient’s condition, he was right to give him medication as he waited to make the exact diagnosis.


Bookman, K., & Zane, R. D. (2020). Surviving a medical malpractice lawsuit. Emergency Medicine Clinics38(2), 539-548.

Youngberg, B. J. (2010). Principles of risk management and patient safety.


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The high rates of malpractice suits raise the question, “Should healthcare professionals not be allowed to make any mistakes?” Consider the following case. In your estimation, is failing to pursue further testing simply a mistake? Consider this from the point of view of the risk manager and of the patient’s spouse.

Malpractice Suits

Malpractice Suits

A 38-year-old female was admitted to the emergency room of Goodcare Hospital with symptoms that suggested a gastrointestinal problem. The attending physician performed all the routine tests, and the results were normal. During the time the patient was in the ER, she had uncontrolled diarrhea and grew weaker. The medication given did not help. The patient died, and the autopsy revealed that she was suffering from giardiasis, an intestinal parasitic infection. This infection is not detected by routine parasitic testing. If detected, the infection can be effectively treated with antibiotics. In this case, if the patient had been correctly diagnosed, she would likely have recovered quickly and lived. The attending physician was sued for negligence for failing to diagnose the infection. A jury awarded the woman’s husband $725,000.

To support your work, use your course and textbook readings and also use the South University Online Library. As in all assignments, cite your sources in your work and provide references for the citations in APA format.

Your initial posting should be addressed at 300-500 words. Submit your document to this Discussion Area by the due date assigned. Be sure to cite your sources using APA format.

Respond to your peers throughout the week. Justify your answers with examples, research, and reasoning.

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