When people visit their doctor or a hospital in Indiana, they often place a high amount of trust in health care providers to recognize who they are and properly match their medical records to other important identification documents. While many establishments go to great lengths to verify a patient’s identity and avoid mix-ups, there are occasionally instances where clerical oversights, blatant ignorance, distraction, and even carelessness can create confusion when establishing identities.
This was the case in a recent incident that occurred in Pennsylvania when a hospital negligently injected a powerful dose of antipsychotic medication into a man who they falsely believed was the correct patient. The story began on a summer afternoon in June when the man arrived home from work and was met by local authorities and a health crisis worker. When they found that his name was the one they were looking for, they handcuffed him and placed him in a patrol car. Once the group arrived at the hospital, information was passed between the authorities and hospital staff and the man was injected with an antipsychotic medication that caused him to go into a drug-induced blackout that lasted over 12 hours.
The man claims that throughout the entire ordeal, he asked the hospital staff to verify his identity by looking at his driver’s license, medical records, and social security card. He also asked if he could call his employer who could vouch that he had spent the entire day working and was not near any of the locations where the man they were looking for had been. He had also asked if he could call family members who could corroborate his story but was declined. The lawsuit alleges negligence and violation of a person’s constitutional rights in a case that many believe could have been easily avoided.
If people have experienced negligence or medical malpractice stemming from a mix-up in the identification, they may benefit from the assistance of a qualified attorney. A legal professional can provide guidance in gathering evidence and building a case that has merit.
Source: The Washington Post, “Confused hospital injected antipsychotic drugs into wrong man, lawsuit alleges,” Derek Hawkins, Jan. 4, 2018