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What is a “never event” — and did one happen to you?

On Behalf of | Jan 27, 2021 | Medical Malpractice

You may have heard of some instances of medical malpractice referred to as “never events.” That is because if all protocols and safety procedures had been followed to the letter, there would never be an occasion where a patient was subsequently harmed or their condition worsened by the very treatment designed to heal them.

This is not to say that patients can’t die during routine treatment or surgeries. Medicine is not an exact science. Things go wrong that even the most devoted doctor and surgeon aren’t able to anticipate. When that happens, it is not usually the fault of the medical team, however.

What sorts of “never events” occur in hospitals?

A doctor may remove the wrong organ, taking out a healthy kidney instead of removing the diseased organ instead. This condemns the patient to a life on a dialysis machine. Other examples of never events include the following:

  • Leaving a foreign body inside of the patient during surgery
  • Patients being given the wrong medications or the wrong dosages of their prescribed medications
  • Operating on the wrong patient
  • Patients being given the wrong blood or biological products
  • Patients developing Stage 3 or Stage 4 decubitus ulcers while being cared for in a health care facility

Please note the above list is far from exhaustive, but all incidents represent events that never should have occurred.

Are you a victim of a never event?

If so, your road to recovery may be long and grueling. You may never again be the person you were before the medical malpractice took place. But righting such an egregious wrong is a complex undertaking best handled by an experienced legal representative. Seek guidance about the path that lies ahead for you.