Medical malpractice is a hot topic of national conversation. At the end of September, Thomas Eric Duncan, who had recently traveled to Texas from West Africa, showed up at a Dallas emergency room suffering from a fever. Despite the serious Ebola outbreak in West Africa, Duncan was not tested for Ebola and was sent home with antibiotics. A few days later he returned to the emergency room with more serious symptoms, was discovered to have Ebola, and died there later after infecting two nurses.
Many people may think that it's obvious that the hospital engaged in medical malpractice. After all, the patient told the nurse he was from West Africa, where the lethal virus is raging, yet no test for that virus was performed. However, in Texas, in order to sue for malpractice, a higher level of negligence must be proven than in many other jurisdictions.
In order to prove medical malpractice in Texas, a plaintiff must show that the medical professional displayed a "willful and wanton negligence". This is a higher standard than in most states. In order to prove the hospital is liable for medical malpractice, Duncan's family also must prove that Duncan would not have died if the diagnosis had not been botched. This may also be difficult to prove, since the virus is very lethal.
Although medical malpractice can be more difficult to prove in Texas than in other states, someone who was injured by the negligence of a healthcare provider should consult with an attorney. It's not impossible to win a medical malpractice case in Texas, and you should pursue your case if you have been harmed by a healthcare provider's negligence.
Call the medical malpractice attorneys at Kennedy Hodges if you have been injured by the negligence of a doctor, nurse, pharmacist, physical therapist, hospital, or another party. You can reach us at 888-894-0119, or visit us on Facebook. Call to learn more about your legal options.