The COVID-19 virus has placed a significant amount of pressure and stress on families, finances, and of course, our healthcare system. With more and more people seeking medical attention for COVID-19-related symptoms, the more time and effort doctors and nurses are expected to put forth to provide adequate care to all of those who need it. Given how aggressive the COVID-19 virus is, doctors and nurses have been forced into making decisions in “crisis-stricken emergency rooms.”
As a result of the circumstances healthcare professionals have been faced with amid the COVID-19 outbreak, many doctors have come forward and are seeking protection from malpractice lawsuits. Reuters reported that more than half a dozen emergency room doctors told the source that “they are concerned about liability as they anticipate rationing care or performing unfamiliar jobs due to staff and equipment shortages caused by the outbreak.” One emergency physician in Boston told the source “There are too many variables here. We are going to be second-guessed. We need better protection if only to guard against unreasonable claims.”
While some states have introduced legislation “that would protect U.S. doctors who practice outside their area of specialty or who use a modified medical device,” both nurses and doctors say they worry about “the lack of equipment and obligations to resuscitate patients without the ventilators needed to do it.” Several doctors also told the source that with the demand for hospital beds constantly increasing, “they weren’t able to be as cautious as they normally might be with non-coronavirus patients.”
The COVID-19 Pandemic is New Territory for Everyone—Even Health Care Professionals
Health care professionals in all areas of the healthcare industry (i.e. hospitals, emergency rooms, doctors’ offices, nursing homes, etc.) are being put on the frontlines during the COVID-19 outbreak—a pandemic in which they have no experience with. Between their lack of experience coupled with the fact that they are risking their lives to render care to others, we can expect that some standards may be relaxed. However, that does not mean a doctor or nurse cannot be held liable if they make a mistake that could have been prevented. While it is evident that medical supplies are limited and healthcare staff members are seeing an influx of patients, they are still expected to provide individuals they see with timely and effective care.
Now, if you think you have a viable medical malpractice case against a Daytona Beach, FL doctor or hospital, we do encourage you to contact Pappas and Russell, P.A. to speak with a Daytona Beach, FL personal injury attorney. Our skilled personal injury lawyers can assess the situation and determine if taking legal action against the health care professional or facility is the right step to take. To learn more about medical malpractice and when you can hold a doctor liable for errors, contact our Daytona Beach, FL personal injury law firm now at 386-254-2941.
Pappas and Russell, P.A. is located at:
213 Silver Beach Avenue
Daytona Beach, FL 32118