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Family Health: Protecting Your Loved Ones from Medical Errors

If your goal for your family is to have a positive and happy lifestyle, you need to start by prioritizing health. This should be a no-brainer for any parent. Focusing on the health of your family means introducing and practicing good habits, from eating healthy to staying physically active.

But besides those habits, it’s also vital for a family to find the best doctor or medical experts to attend to their healthcare needs. These professionals can help you prioritize your well-being and minimize the risks of health issues. But while their primary job is to keep patients safe and healthy, that doesn’t mean mistakes can’t happen. Whether you have your own family physician or you visit multiple doctors every year, it’s imperative that you play your part in minimizing the risk of medical errors. Find out how below.

1. Share your medical history

Informing the doctor and nurse about your personal and family medical history is the foundation of preventing treatment and medication errors. From the current medications you’re taking to any drug allergies, your family physician should be made aware of them.

It’s best if you have a complete list of your current prescription and medications. These can include herbal supplements, vitamins, pain relievers, allergy medications, or eye drops. Give the list to your doctor. Doing so can help prevent medication interaction that can lead to potentially dangerous reactions in your body. In some cases, certain medications can become ineffective when combined with another drug.

2. Always inform yourself

Even if you’re just a patient, it’s also your responsibility to inform yourself about your medical condition and the treatment and medications you’re receiving. Reputable healthcare professionals are naturally careful when attending to their patients’ needs. But you can further minimize the risks of medical errors if you’ll also look out for your health.

There are thousands of available medical resources online that you can access. Make it a habit to research the common medications prescribed for particular health conditions. Aside from doing your own research, don’t be afraid to ask questions to your trusted family physician. With their years of training and practice, they can surely provide you with proper recommendations and advice for your health concerns.

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3. Consider a buddy system

Having a family member or friend with you during your medical visits is incredibly helpful for preventing medical errors. It’s always better to have an extra pair of ears and eyes, after all. This way, you can ensure all instructions and information given by your family doctor will be understood clearly.

Even if you’re paying close attention to what your physician is saying, it’s possible to still miss out on some details. When you need to stay at the hospital, ensure you have someone to keep an eye on your physical and mental state. Don’t hesitate to call when you need assistance.

4. Have legal counsel ready

Having a good legal defense in place is the best approach to protect your family from malpractice. Many individuals do not consider looking for reputable legal experts until they are in the actual situation of malpractice or medication error. Start looking for a lawyer who specializes in handling similar cases and can guide you when making the right claims.

You can also consider seeking the help of a medical expert witness assistant who can help you in a case of malpractice. Such experts will work with lawyers to evaluate evidence and documents that concern the claim. With the help of these professionals, you can better handle your claims and request the compensation you deserve. Don’t forget to protect your legal rights too.

5. Get a second opinion

The last thing you need to remember is to always seek a second opinion, especially for serious medical concerns. Family physicians are indeed hired to prevent the hassle of finding a doctor when you need one. However, take note that misdiagnosed cases happen each year.

If your family physician diagnosed you with a particular condition, immediately seek a second opinion. Getting an additional consultation won’t hurt. It only minimizes the likelihood of experiencing misdiagnosis. In most cases, a general physician will readily refer you to the right specialist who can confirm and provide the right treatment.

Don’t let you and your family members become victims of medical malpractice. Do your part in taking care of your health and help your medical specialist provide you with better recommendations and treatment. The simple steps above can drastically reduce any health risks you might suffer from the hands of your own healthcare providers.

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