Though surgical procedures that were once impossible have become common and safe, sometimes errors occur because of a surgical team’s negligence. When a surgical error occurs, it often results in long term injuries or even death for the patient.
The term surgical malpractice implies that only surgeons are capable of errors during a procedure. In reality, any member of the surgical team may be guilty of malpractice. This includes nurses, anesthesiologists, orderlies, and surgeons.
Each of these healthcare providers serves an important function throughout the surgical process. The nurse is responsible for preparing a patient for surgery and assisting the surgeon during the procedure. Additionally, the nurse may be responsible for taking care of the patient post-surgery.
The anesthesiologist puts the individual under anesthesia before the procedure begins. Without anesthetic, surgery would likely be impossible since the patient would experience intense pain from the procedure.
Orderlies typically transport patients. This is important after the procedure has been completed, as the patient has to be moved from the operating room to the recovery room carefully. Transporting patients after surgery is difficult and requires a great deal of care.
The surgeon performs the actual procedure. He or she has experience performing surgical acts aimed at fixing ailments that rehabilitation, therapy, and medicine cannot fix.
Each of these individuals plays a vital role throughout the surgical process. Unfortunately, this means that if one of these individuals fails to carry out his or her duties appropriately and carefully, the patient may suffer. When this happens, the individual who failed to perform his or her duties may be guilty of malpractice.
Determining fault in surgical malpractice may be a difficult task.