A hospital should be a place of healing and recovery. However, for some patients, a stay in the hospital can lead to an unexpected and potentially life-threatening consequence – hospital-acquired infections (HAIs).
HAIs are alarmingly common, affecting millions of patients across the United States annually. They are caused by bacteria, viruses, fungi or other pathogens and can occur in various health care settings, including hospitals, clinics and long-term care facilities.
Why do these infections happen?
HAIs can occur due to a number of factors, most of which are preventable. Poor hygiene practices, improper sterilization of medical equipment, inadequate hand washing and the improper use of antibiotics are among the common causes of HAIs. Typically, HAIs result from some form of negligence by health care providers.
Common types of hospital-acquired infections
HAIs can manifest in different ways, including surgical site infections, urinary tract infections, bloodstream infections, pneumonia and gastrointestinal infections. All of these conditions can be detrimental to a patient’s health and even lead to death.
Getting justice as a victim of medical negligence
If you suffer an HAI, you have the right to hold the negligent parties accountable and seek compensation for the harm and losses you suffered. You can do this by bringing a medical malpractice claim against the liable parties.
However, you must demonstrate the elements of negligence and causation for a successful claim. It means showing that the infection directly resulted from the health care provider’s breach of the expected standard of care.
Seeking legal guidance can help you navigate the complexities of such claims and build a strong argument that will increase your chances of getting a fair settlement.