Ten Tips to Prevent Dangerous Medical Errors for Children

Medical errors cause millions of injuries each year. Doctors, nurses, and surgeons who are inexperienced, exhausted, depressed, or burnt out are at higher risk of making mistakes that could seriously harm their patients’ health. It only takes one small medical error to cause chronic suffering, permanent loss of function, or even death.

When a child becomes a victim of such errors, it’s especially devastating. Children who are too young to detect obvious medication errors or inappropriate treatments are helpless when their parents aren’t present, and such situations can easily occur in hospital settings. While you can’t prevent all medical errors, keeping your eyes and ears open and observing the following tips can help you protect your child from many preventable disasters.

Ten Ways to Stop Children’s Medical Mishaps Before They Happen

  1. Make sure that each doctor or other medical professional treating your child has all of his or her important health information including a list of all current prescription and over-the-counter medications, vitamins, and herbs. Be sure to inform prescribing doctors about any drug allergies or previous adverse drug reactions.
  1. Have your doctor or pharmacist explain basic facts about new medications in terms you understand. Memorize the drug’s generic name, dosage instructions, and side effects as well as the pill or capsule’s color and appearance. Understand the purpose of the drug, its intended results, and how long it will be prescribed.
  1. If your child is having surgery, choose a hospital performs the specific procedure regularly.
  1. Confirm that your child’s doctor and surgeon are in agreement about what will be done during the surgery.
  1. Ensure that your child never removes his or her hospital identification bracelet.
  1. If your child has a food allergy, disability, or special needs, place a sign over the hospital bed to alert nurses and aids.
  1. To minimize infection risk, ask your child’s attending healthcare workers if they have washed their hands. They’ll be more vigilant in the future if they know you’re paying attention.
  1. When your child is discharged from the hospital, be sure to get follow-up and home treatment instructions in writing.
  1. If you note an apparent contradiction or error in medical history, treatment, test results, or any other health issues pertaining to your child, speak up immediately.
  1. Don’t be afraid to ask questions about your child’s treatment. Obtain a second opinion if you don’t feel comfortable with your doctor’s plans. Playing an integral part in your child’s healthcare will put you in a better position to catch simple mistakes that could have serious consequences.

If Your Child Is a Victim of Medical Error, Let Us Help

Medical professionals who cause injury or illness to a child through their medical errors must be held accountable. If your family has suffered because of a tragic and avoidable medical mistake, let Jacobs Law, LCC help you get the compensation you deserve. Contact us for a free consultation today by calling (317) 794-2024, or use our convenient online contact form.

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