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How to do your part in preventing hospital negligence

Mistakes on the part of any hospital employee can pose significant injury risks to you or a hospitalized family member. Most of us expect these medical professionals to provide competent, if not extraordinary, medical care to each person in need. Most of the time, that is exactly what happens, but other times, errors or outright negligence puts you or your family in harm's way.

One piece published on KevinMD.com recounts the story of a couple (both of them health professionals) with an infant daughter who needed hospital-based light therapy treatment for elevated bilirubin. The couple was appalled and deeply concerned to see outdated therapy equipment handled by a staff that seemed to know little about how to use the equipment. Worse, there was no attending physician on duty with whom the couple could discuss their concerns.

The couple took their daughter out of the environment resulting in an immediate response by the hospital's neonatal intensive care unit (NICU). In the end, the newborn received the right care and disaster was averted, but it is a clear example of a potential case of health care facility wrongdoing.

We wanted to talk about this to assure you that you do not need to be a doctor, a nurse or even a hospital employee to take action when something does not feel right. In the end, you are the patient and you have the right to insist that someone addresses your questions or your concerns immediately.

Our team of medical and legal professionals recommends that all patients in the Boston area take an active role in their health care. Ask questions, know your medical history, speak your mind and always document your experience. This will aid you if the worst happens and you find yourself seeking counsel from an injury attorney about remedies for hospital negligence. Please visit our website if you need to learn more.

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