The Growing Med Mal Problem
Medical malpractice is actually a much bigger problem than many people realize and even bigger than medical professionals want to admit. The latest statistics on the Internet show that roughly 225,000 people die each year as a direct result of medical malpractice. The main question really ought to be, what is anyone doing about it?
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The scary thing about the statistics is that despite the rising numbers of deaths there are very few lawsuits filed. It appears that only 2% of the potential 225,000 claims for med mal actually make it as far as filing a medical malpractice lawsuit. Unfortunately, the numbers of plaintiffs who are awarded compensation is even smaller. This should not stop anyone who feels they have been a victim of med mal from stepping forward and speaking to a qualified med mal attorney.
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Despite what you see on television and read in the papers, medical malpractice lawsuits should not be curtailed or reduced (as many politicians seem to want). More patients need to launch lawsuits to shine some light on the problem so it has the opportunity to be addressed, not hidden from the public.
If you don't think the numbers are really all that significant, consider these figures. An estimated 12,000 die due to unnecessary surgery; medication errors are responsible for roughly 7,000 deaths; and other medical errors account for approximately 20,000 deaths. This is just the tip of the iceberg. The numbers also account for close to 80,000 people nationwide who die from something called nosocomial infections they contracted in the hospital. Pretty staggering numbers aren't they?