Medical Malpractice & System Failures in the State of Utah.
Hi my name is George Tait, I'm an attorney here in Salt Lake City, Utah. I'm an old registered
nurse before I became an attorney and we do a fair amount of medical malpractice cases here in
Medical malpractice is complicated litigation, oftentimes and almost all the time medical
malpractice is a result of a system failure. Not when you are suing physicians usually, but when
you're suing a hospital.
System failures, what is a system failure? We all have systems, attorneys have systems about how
cases are taken in, what has to be done next, filing a complaint, etc. I'm sure almost everybody of
anybody listening to this video follows system at work. What do you do when you get to work, what do next, etc.
Hospitals have systems too of course. When looking at a systems failure case you are essentially
looking at three things:
So, let's take a typical medical malpractice case for example in the state of Utah. All hospitals,
extended care facilities, assisted living, nursing homes, rehabilitation center- all of them by
whatever name, hire nurses. There have been cases in the State of Utah where the healthcare
facility has not screened the nurses properly. The healthcare facility has to make sure that they are
good people, that they have the adequate training and qualifications to be a registered nurse or
CA's or PA's, physician's assistant, or nurse practitioner or whatever the case may be. They have
to make sure that these people are properly qualified. Oftentimes, these healthcare facilities fail to
do that especially where nowadays, that employers are scrambling for employees, they might lower
the bar a little bit.
What's the second thing you need for a system failure? The second thing you need for a system
failure is training. Once the facility hires a nurse for example, with the basic education of a nurse,
the training does not stop there. These facilities must train their nurses in the area in which they're
working. For example, if you're an orthopedic nurse, you have to have continuing education, or
should have continuing education or training in orthopedics, how to properly look after a person
with a new hip or a new knee. These are thing that should be done, proper training.
So, qualifications, training, the last thing is supervision. There has to be periodic checks on
employees. Let's take that same orthopedic nurse, she's qualified, he or she has gone under training
and now they have the proper qualifications, they have the proper training but they're not
supervised. So, on the job, let's say they're looking after a patient with a new hip, or their charting
is not checked, or they're looking after a person with a new hip but they are not checked about
how they're turning them in bed to stop a dislocation for example or something. There are all kinds
of problems there,
Oftentimes, when attorneys sue facilities, it's a system failure and those are the three essential
things you need for a system failure.
My name is George Tait, I'm an old registered nurse and now an attorney here in Salt Lake City.
We practice in medical malpractice, if you have any questions, I'm happy to answer them. You
can text us, email us, call us, whatever you prefer.
Be careful out there.