Maryland Lawyers Helping Patients Bring Medical Malpractice Claims
Blood transfusions can be vital life-saving procedures for individuals who have lost a lot of blood. However, if a blood transfusion is not done correctly, the patient can be severely injured.
What is a Blood Transfusion?
A blood transfusion is a relatively common and safe process that involves receiving blood through an intravenous line. Blood transfusions are done to replace blood that is lost due to surgery or a serious injury, such as one sustained in an accident. A transfusion may also be necessary if your body can’t make blood properly due to an illness or disease. During a Blood transfusion an IV line is placed into one of your blood vessels which then delivers the blood into your body.
Blood Transfusion Injuries
Blood is made up of numerous parts including red and white blood cells, plasma and platelets. Transfusions can consist of blood as a whole or as it’s individual parts. When precise safety standards are not adhered to, a blood transfusion can cause more harm than good. Healthcare providers must ensure that the donor blood correctly matches your blood type. Blood transfusion injuries can happen for a number of reasons including: contaminated blood; wrong blood type; improper or inaccurate labeling of blood; improper storage of blood and more. Errors in blood transfusions could lead to serious infections, diseases or even death.
Maryland Medical Malpractice Law
Individuals who have suffered blood transfusion injuries can take legal action against the at-fault medical provider by filing a medical malpractice claim. Medical malpractice cases involve a breach of the applicable standard of care. The standard refers to level of care that another healthcare provider would use in the same or similar situation. Determining a violation of the standard of care is not black and white and will vary according to the specific situation.
Medical malpractice cases are rooted in the theory of negligence. As such, a plaintiff who wants to win on a medical malpractice claim must establish the following elements:
- the healthcare provider had a duty to adhere to the appropriate standard of care;
- the health care provider breached that duty; and
- the healthcare provider’s breach was the direct cause of the patient’s harm. All of these elements must be present in order for the plaintiff to be able to recover any type of compensation.
It is important to note that Maryland is one of the few states that recognize the traditional common law doctrine of contributory negligence. This means that any negligence on the part of the plaintiff will bar his or her recovery entirely. Put another way, if the plaintiff was even one percent negligent, he or she will not be able to seek any compensation for the harm suffered.
Medical malpractice claims in Maryland must be filed within a certain time limit, known as the statute of limitations. Under state law, a medical malpractice lawsuit must be filed within five years from the date of when the malpractice occurred, or three years from the time the injury was discovered, whichever is earlier. The statute of limitations for a wrongful death claim in Maryland is three years from the date of death..
Attorneys Helping Victims of Medical Mistakes in Maryland
With more than 75 combined years of experience, we understand the nuances of this area of the law. If you or someone you know has suffered harm due to a botched blood transfusion, we can help. The medical malpractice lawyers at Wais, Vogelstein, Forman & Offutt in Baltimore have helped countless clients pursue their medical negligence claims and can help you as well. We stand by one principle: compassionate and aggressive representation of the most seriously injured.