I went to the ER and when i was discharged the doctor wrote a different prescription to what was on my discharge papers. I did not realize it, went and filled the medication and took them, ended up in the ER again after 3 days of not getting better. It was then we realized he wrote a different medication from what i was to be taking. Do i have a case?
1 Answer from Attorneys
Technically, you may have a Med Mal claim. The basic underlying issue in any medical malpractice claim is whether there has been a deviation/departure from what is called "the standard of care." In a nutshell, "the standard of care" is what reasonable medical professionals would have reasonably done under the same or similar circumstances.
I am of the opinion that's it is certainly NOT reasonable for any treating medical professional to write down incorrect or different medication instructions for a patient that they knew or certainly should have known were incorrect or different than what had been prescribed earlier.
Clearly, there are questions/issues in your situation involving whether a change in medication or a different plan of treatment was reasonable based on your then current history, examination or diagnosis. Therein lies the answer to your query.
Perhaps equally important from a purely legal perspective is whether or not you have and real and permanent damages from this potential medical mistake. Medical Malpractice lawsuits are typically very expensive to bring and almost ALWAYS require Expert testimony to prove the medical mistake in a court of law. These experts are typically prominent in the medical community and often charge upwards of $1000.00 hour for their review, written opinions, and testimony. So without substantial damages many actual medical malpractice cases are simply economically unfeasable because they cost more to prove than they are ultimately worth.
Lastly and most importantly it is important to point out that in 2004 the Texas Legislature decided that the cap (or maximum amount) of non economic damages allowable on Medical Malpractice claims is $250,000.00 per incident.
Clearly this is FAR from fair but is a legal reality that injured patients and their lawyers have to deal with here in Texas.