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You don’t expect a doctor error, but it can happen

Imagine this: You become ill or suffer an injury. As a result, you have no choice but to see a doctor or immediately visit the closest hospital.

You hope that the entire experience will be positive, with the end result a better overall level of health. Then something happens: You find that an error was made that has caused you additional harm.

Doctor errors are not common, but these do come into play every now and again. As a patient, you need to trust your medical team. You also need to realize that they can make mistakes just like every other type of professional.

There are many types of doctor errors, ranging from misdiagnosis to prescribing the wrong type of treatment. If this comes to the forefront, it is important to pinpoint who was responsible for making the error. Generally speaking, you need to focus your search on these two areas:

-- The doctor. Did his or her actions directly result in additional harm?

-- The facility. This can include a hospital, pharmacy or other type of medical facility.

As a patient, you have the right to seek medical care. You also have the right to receive care within the standards of the medical profession. If this does not happen, the end result can be additional injury or illness. Unfortunately, it can also lead to death.

While you don't expect a doctor to make an error, you must do your best to keep an eye on your medical team. If a mistake is made, you should then seek an immediate solution. Only then will you want to learn more about your legal rights. Remember this: Your health is more important than anything else.

Source: FindLaw, "Medical Malpractice In-Depth," accessed Dec. 16, 2015

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