It did not seem like a big deal when you went into the emergency room. At least, you were hoping it was not as bad as you feared. After you told the triage nurse your symptoms, however, you started to feel worse. Much worse.
Unfortunately, when you are faced with a medical emergency, your condition can get progressively worse, faster than you could have predicted. Ideally, the staff in the emergency room put everyone in the right order to receive appropriate care.
A long wait usually does not mean a medical malpractice claim, but sometimes it does.
Deciding the Order is a Difficult Job
The triage nurse has a tough job. The nurse needs to get an objective analysis of everyone’s conditions as they come in and put them in order. Sometimes someone who does not seem very sick needs more urgent care because of a symptom that is difficult to see, and sometimes people are dishonest about their symptoms.
Although the order can seem arbitrary, triage nurses are trained to look for the most dangerous symptoms, like trouble breathing, to make sure that the most critical patients receive care first. Nurses also need to evaluate the needs coming in the door compared to the resources available in the emergency room.
Evaluating the Damage
You already understand how fast your symptoms can progress, but the damage done by waiting for treatment is an important question when it comes to medical malpractice in the emergency room. While you may have started to feel worse while you were waiting for care, the medical staff in the emergency room still have obligations to all the people waiting.
In general, if you receive the same treatment for your condition while you are in the hospital, you probably got the appropriate care.
Acting When Appropriate Waiting Room Care is Not Given
If there is something medically unacceptable with your waiting room treatment, then you will probably get a clear hunch about it. Being ignored, waiting excessively long periods of time, seeing people who say they are relatively happy and healthy being treated before you despite arriving after you, and so on will all probably trigger your instinct that something is wrong.
If you get progressively worse in the waiting room and you believe your prognosis also worsened because of it, then you should contact a medical malpractice attorney to discuss the situation with a legal professional. In Indiana, you can count on our legal team at Garau Germano, P.C. in Indianapolis for reliable legal representation and counsel. Using our extensive legal experience – more than 20 years – to help determine if you have a valid medical malpractice claim on your hands.