Most New Mexico residents who go to an emergency room want to be seen right away, but also expect to sit for a while. For some patients, that wait could mean the difference between recovery and a premature death. If evidence suggests that a death was due to a delayed diagnosis, a medical malpractice claim might be appropriate.

An out-of-state woman recently filed a medical malpractice claim against an area hospital and medical professionals alleging that her father’s death was due to a misdiagnosis and then a delayed diagnosis. Her father suffered from a serious infection with the threat of imminent sepsis. When the man went to see a doctor, his daughter alleges that her father’s condition was misdiagnosed.

At some point thereafter, he decided to go to an emergency room of a California hospital. His daughter alleges that her father was forced to wait approximately eight hours before being seen by a doctor. The hospital finally admitted him, but by the time he received a diagnosis, it was sepsis. According to his daughter, her father suffered from severe pain until his death on Jan. 13, 2005.

For some New Mexico residents any delay in diagnosis could prove deadly. Surviving family members retain the right to file a medical malpractice claim if it is believed that the standard of care received by the victim was substandard. In most cases, a qualified medical professional will need to review the case to make this determination. If the evidence supports the filing of a claim, and the court rules that medical malpractice occurred, damages could be awarded.

Source: dailycal.org, “Woman sues Alta Bates Summit Medical Center for alleged medical malpractice“, Gibson Chu, Jan. 25, 2017