Patients in a hospital interact with more than the doctors. Various members of the hospital’s staff perform services for each patient. Can a dissatisfied patient sue the hospital for a mistake made while someone was offering a service?
A patient can sue a hospital if one of the hospital’s employees has been negligent, thus endangering the patient’s health. Negligence by a doctor does not allow a patient to file a lawsuit against the hospital, unless one of these situations holds true:
• The hospital controls the doctor’s working hours and vacation time. In other words, the doctor belongs on a list of the hospital’s employees.
• The doctor’s fees are set by the hospital.
• Patients cannot sue an employee for negligence, if that employee was being supervised by a physician during the time when he or she exhibited negligent behavior.
Other rules about hospitals and doctors
A doctor’s competency can work to determine whether or not the institution in which that physician works (typically a hospital) might be sued. Hospitals can be sued for having an incompetent physician on their staff. The health care facilities often provide patients with a letter that explains a doctor’s position, in relation to the institution in which that same physician works. However, any patient that wants to sue needs the assistance of a personal injury lawyer in Milton.
A listing of hospitals’ rights does not include the right to tell a patient whether or not it is wise to follow a doctor’s orders. A letter can be used to show that a given physician is not on the staff. But suppose that a doctor that is not highly respected has managed to stay on the staff of an institution that cares for hospitalized patients. How can a lawsuit be avoided?
If some patient has rejected the suggestion from that less-respected physician, a member of the hospital’s medical staff might offer support to that same patient. Of course, that cannot be done in an emergency situation. The patients in the emergency room cannot be given a paper that makes clear whether or not a given doctor is on the institution’s staff. For that reason, a patient that was treated in an emergency room does have the ability to sue the institution that houses that same emergency room. Does that mean that is easy to file a successful lawsuit against an institution that cares for hospitalized men and women?
No, it is not easy to initiate such a lawsuit. For a charge of medical malpractice to gain support in a courtroom, it must show that the negligent party failed to act in a reasonable manner. What acts are not reasonable in an emergency situation? A jury might need to answer that question, if a hospital has been sued, especially if the plaintiff was once a patient in an emergency room.