If a person dies as a result of medical negligence, is the doctor, nurse, or hospital responsible? Hospitals or other medical facilities are often accountable for wrongful death when a patient receives incompetent care from staff members, such as nurses and medical technicians. However, if a doctor commits medical malpractice, the hospital is not typically held responsible, unless the doctor is an actual or apparent employee of the hospital.
When the Medical Facility is at Fault
Not all negative medical outcomes, such as death, are the result of negligence. It’s important to remember that adverse consequences can occur through the fault of no one. However, when an employee of the hospital is responsible for wrongful death, the facility is more than likely to be liable. The hospital or medical facility employ medical staff such as nurses, support people, and technicians. If an employee is held accountable for the injury or death of a patient, the patient or family members of the patient can bring a claim against the hospital.
When the Doctor is Held Accountable
Unless it’s concluded that the doctor is an actual or apparent employee of the hospital, he or she is held accountable for any wrongful death. In most cases, doctors are considered independent contractors, which means that the hospital cannot be held liable for any wrong-doing. If you believe a loved one is the victim of wrongful death as a result of a doctor’s negligence, it’s crucial to determine whether or not the hospital employs the doctor.
Exceptions to the Rule
In some cases, hospitals or medical facilities can be held liable for wrongful deaths caused by independent doctors. For example, if a hospital provides doctors with privileges when it’s aware of the doctor’s incompetence, the hospital would be held liable for medical malpractice. If a hospital fails to clarify the doctor-hospital relationship and the doctor appears to be an employee of the facility, the hospital could be held liable.
Contact The Law Offices of Cardaro & Peek, LLC Today
The lawyers of Cardaro & Peek, LLC have the experience and resources necessary to investigate and litigate all types of medical claims throughout Maryland and Washington D.C. Cardaro & Peek, LLC has medical personnel on staff and has access to nationally recognized, board-certified physicians and other experts, to assist in the investigation, analysis, and prosecution of all types of medical malpractice claims. If you or a loved one have experienced malpractice, give us a call at 410-752-6166. Please visit our website www.cardarolaw.com and follow us on Facebook, Twitter, Google+, and LinkedIn for more information.