Florida Medical Malpractice Damages for Post-Operative Infection
Infection can be linked to a wide range of circumstances in any Florida health care setting, but there are very specific factors when looking at infection linked to a medical procedure. According to the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ), a surgery-related infection is one that appears at or near the incision within 30 days of undergoing surgery. If a medical device was implanted, the timeline is extended to 90 days. AHRQ also reports that postoperative infection is the most common complication after a procedure, occurring in up to 4 percent of patients.
In total, more than 10 million patients undergo surgery every year, so the 4 percent is actually quite sizable. Surgical site infection (SSI) falls under Florida medical malpractice laws, so you may be entitled to compensation if you meet the legal requirements. It is important to consult with a Tampa medical malpractice lawyer about your rights, but an overview of damages is useful.
Patient Losses from SSI: The leading cause of hospital readmission after undergoing a surgical procedure is infection. Plus, those who develop an SSI while still in the hospital will have their stay extended by several days. The costs related to readmission and longer hospitalization are significant. Patients may also sustain losses from:
- Additional care necessary to correct a post-operative infection;
- Having to pay for medications;
- Being unable to work;
- Incurring transportation costs to and from doctor’s appointments; and,
- Implications that affect quality of life, sometimes called pain and suffering damages.
Categories of Damages for Medical Malpractice: Based upon your losses as described above, you may qualify to seek compensation as reimbursement after suffering an SSI. You incur medical costs, lose wages, and are forced to expend additional amounts for medications. These are economic damages that are tangible and can be measured in dollar value.
In addition, compensation is available for the losses that affect your quality of life. Besides pain and suffering, you may recover damages for emotional distress, scarring and disfigurement, and impacts on your personal relationships.
How to Recover Compensation: Medical malpractice is a unique type of personal injury case because there are several requirements before you can even file a lawsuit. It is necessary to conduct a pre-suit investigation to ensure that your case has merit. This requirement can be met by having a medical expert prepare an opinion asserting that negligence occurred, leading to a post-operative infection.
Florida laws allow a period of time for the parties to conduct additional investigations, as well as to negotiate settlement. If you cannot resolve the claim by agreement, you can file your case in court because you fulfilled pre-suit requirements.
Discuss Options with a Florida Post-Operative Infection Attorney
The process for recovering compensation after an SSI is complicated, so skilled legal counsel is critical. Our team at Greco & Wozniak P.A. is ready to serve your needs, as our firm focuses on med mal cases. Please contact a post-operative lawyer today at 813.223.7849 or via our website. We can set up a no-cost case review at our offices in Tampa, FL.