The U.S. Department of Health & Human Services offers these 15 tips for patients to help their doctors avoid medical mistakes:
- Before surgery, meet with your surgeon to discuss your upcoming operation.
- Ask your surgeon to provide you with any postoperative prescriptions you will need after surgery so they can be filled and ready.
- Schedule a visit to your surgery center one week prior to the surgery to discuss any possible complications and postoperative care.
- Ask your surgeon to meet with your family immediately following the surgery to describe exactly what was done and reiterate postoperative care.
- Get a copy of your medical records.
- Make sure that before any blood is drawn, the tubes are already clearly marked with your name.
- Get a copy of your test results, whether positive or negative.
- Ask your doctor to write your prescription so you can read it and to avoid abbreviations that can be confused (example: qd = once a day, qid=4 times a day).
- Let your doctor know all the medicines you are currently taking, including over-the-counter and herbal remedies.
- Bring all your medicines and supplements to your doctor visits.
- Tell your doctor about any allergies you have or if you have suffered any adverse reactions to any medications.
- Ask your doctor to explain your medications to you in terms you can understand, making sure you know when and how long you are supposed to take them and about any potential side effects.
- If you see more than one doctor, be sure they all have your important health information.
- Make sure your primary care doctor coordinates your care, which will be especially important if you have any health issues or are in the hospital.
- Speak up if you have questions or concerns.
If you or someone you love has been injured as a result of a medical mistake, our Texas medical malpractice attorneys have the experience and resources to help you through this difficult time and obtain just compensation for your injuries. Please call 800-248-6000 or contact us for a free consultation.