Whether you have been personally impacted by a medical mistake in the past or you might suspect that a medial error has been made now, understanding the landscape of how these problems are addressed can be important for you. Information published by Diederich Healthcare and based on data from the National Practitioner Data Bank shows that the state of Washington saw a jump in payouts for medical malpractice in 2017 over the prior year.
In 2017, more than $75 million was paid for medical errors statewide, a 12.9-percent increase compared to 2016. Neighboring Oregon saw a jump of a whopping 97 percent to more than $62 million. Neither state was in the top ten for payouts per capita but neither were they in the bottom ten. Nationally, more than $3.9 billion was paid to people for compensation in medical malpractice claims.
Tragically, 30 percent of the claims involved a patient death and another 38 percent involved permanent injuries that were classified as either major or significant. In 12 percent of cases, patients experienced brain damage or were rendered quadraplegic and requiring lifelong care. Diagnoses were factors in 34 percent of the claims and surgeries in another 22 percent. Problems involving treatments were noted in 19 percent of the cases that resulted in claims payouts. Obstetrics, monitoring and medications were factors in another 19 percent of the claims.
If you would like to learn more about how you might seek help or financial compensation after a medical mistake, please feel free to visit the provider negligence and patient compensation page of our Washington State medical malpractice website.