Never Events

Chicago Attorneys Knowledgeable in Medical Malpractice Claims

SurgeonsThere are certain health care mistakes or concerns that may not be preventable. However, there are some errors that are so shocking that they have been identified as "never events." These are events that are considered egregious and that can result in permanent injuries or death. When you go to your doctor, you expect the doctor to use an appropriate level of care to avoid causing you harm. If you have suffered a never event due to medical malpractice, the experienced Chicago medical malpractice lawyers at Moll Law Group are available to help you file a claim or lawsuit for compensation.

Proving Liability for Never Events

The National Quality Forum has identified 28 adverse events as being "never events"—events that should never occur in a health care setting. Researchers at Johns Hopkins have estimated that 4,000 surgical never events happen each year.

Unfortunately, never events are surprisingly common, albeit completely preventable. One of the most common never events is a wrong-site surgery in which the surgeon operates on the wrong body part. For example, if a surgeon removes a healthy arm and leaves an arm affected by gangrene, this would be a wrong-site surgery and never event. Another common never event is patient suicide at a health care facility. Still others are sexual assault on a patient, using incompatible blood, or leaving a sponge or tool in a body cavity after surgery.

Hospitals have a duty to protect patient safety. Similarly, medical practitioners are supposed to use caution when treating all patients to avoid causing irreversible harm. If you have been harmed by a never event, you have grounds to file a claim for compensation and a medical malpractice lawsuit.

In Illinois, you will need to establish your status as a patient of a doctor, nurse, or health care institution, the doctor or other health care professional's breach of the standard of care in treating you, and causation leading to your injuries, as well as the harm that you suffered. The standard of care is an accepted set of practices that other medical professionals in the same field would use when treating a similar patient under similar circumstances. A similar patient is someone with the same or nearly the same age, medical history, and particular symptoms. In the case of a never event, such as operating on the wrong body part, it is relatively straightforward to establish that malpractice has occurred.

You have two years from the date you know or should have known about the injury to sue in Illinois. Patients generally may not bring a lawsuit more than four years after the medical negligence occurred. However, different time limits apply to minors and people with disabilities.

Expert testimony may not be as necessary to establish the standard of care in a never event case because many of these are obvious errors easily understood by a layperson. However, even in the case of a never event, it may be important for your attorney to review your medical records and consult experts about possible defenses that may be raised by the opposing side. Therefore, it is important to consult an attorney right away.

Consult a Trustworthy Medical Malpractice Lawyer in Chicago or Beyond

If your doctor's negligence results in a never event, the Chicago attorneys at Moll Law Group are available to help you pursue a claim or lawsuit for compensation for the harm that you have suffered. We represent injured people in Naperville, Schaumburg, Wheaton, and communities throughout Cook County. Billions of dollars have been recovered in lawsuits in which our firm has been involved. Contact us online or call us at 312-462-1700 to set up a free consultation with an injury attorney.