It may be a surprising fact that a medical malpractice suit can stem from a simple case of forgetting to wash hands. But with immune systems already compromised in many hospital patients, it becomes a serious health problem when there is a lack of proper hygiene among healthcare workers. A recent University of Wisconsin study indicates that even with this awareness, patients are oftentimes reluctant to speak up when doctors, nurses and other medical professionals fail to wash their hands.
The study found that despite 99.5 percent of patients believing healthcare workers should wash hands, just 54 percent would feel comfortable enough to ask a doctor to wash his or her hands, and 64 percent would ask a nurse. Additionally, just 14 percent had ever actually requested that a healthcare worker wash his or her hands.
Among the infections that may be acquired in a hospital setting are those associated with methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) and Clostridium difficile (C. diff). Researchers requested 200 patients at risk for or with a history of these infections to fill out a questionnaire to obtain this data.
Medical Malpractice Stemming from Hospital-Acquired Infections
Infections may affect surgical patients at the site of the operation or those who receive a central line. But other patients may acquire such an infection, too. These infections may be transmitted due to an unsterile environment, equipment or poor hygiene. While some patients may recover, for others, infections can be life-threatening.
Not all cases of infection warrant a claim, though. Hospitals and medical professionals who follow all hygiene and patient safety requirements and do not act in a negligent manner may not be held liable. Discuss the matter with an attorney for more pointed information pertaining to your medical malpractice case.
Contacting a New York Medical Malpractice Attorney
When a hospital or its healthcare workers are negligent in the care of a patient, it could lead to filing a claim to recover damages if the patient is injured. Seek legal advice from a medical malpractice attorney at Gacovino, Lake & Associates at (800) 246-4878. We can help you assemble the evidence you will need to establish liability and to prove the extent and severity of your injuries.