Patient abandonment occurs when a health care provider terminates their treatment of a patient without lawful reasoning or giving them adequate time to find a new medical professional. Physicians and other providers cannot discontinue caring for a patient if it results in undue harm. When a patient is abandoned, they could file a personal injury claim on the grounds of medical malpractice. To determine whether you’re entitled to compensation, first know the basics of this type of case.
Elements of a Patient Abandonment Malpractice Case
To prove that a patient abandonment case is medical malpractice, there are a few specific elements that must be present. First, a doctor-patient relationship must have existed. The provider will have to initially agree to care for the patient and begin treatment. Second, the patient will have to show they still require medical attention. Next, the withdrawal of treatment was abrupt, not giving the patient reasonable time to secure a new provider. Finally, the patient will need to verify that they experienced a personal injury as a direct result of the abandonment.
Examples of Patient Abandonment
Some of the most common forms include transferring a patient to a new physician without instructions or medical records, refusing treatment because of a patient’s inability to pay, and failing to respond to patient concerns or schedule them for appointments within a timely manner. A provider may also inadvertently abandon a patient by taking a vacation without arranging coverage, prematurely discharging them from the hospital, or neglecting to properly follow up with them so they are treated adequately.
Unfortunately, the relationship between a patient and their medical provider doesn’t always turn out to be a healthy one. If you believe you’ve experienced patient abandonment, consult a personal injury attorney. With almost two decades of experience handling these types of claims, the legal team at The Gil Law Firm in Dothan, AL, will easily determine whether you have a valid malpractice case. They will explore your options and aggressively fight for compensation. Contact them at (334) 673-0100 or visit their website for more information about personal injury cases.