An innovative device that has been designed to record surgeries has been developed by researchers at a Canadian university. The purpose of the technology is to collect specific data during procedures in an effort to identify errors so that operative teams can observe what actions precipitate mistakes and modify their methods in order to prevent future mishaps. The recordings could also be useful as evidence in medical malpractice cases in courtrooms in Maryland and around the country.
Legislation has been introduced that would give patients an opportunity to choose whether or not they would like to have their surgeries recorded. The option would generally be selected when patients delineate their specific wishes while drawing up their advance directives. Bills in Wisconsin and New York that seek to put recording equipment in surgical suites are currently under consideration in light of two women’s deaths that were caused by overdoses of anesthesia during the preoperative period.
Cases of morbidity and mortality in surgical patients often result from natural causes and circumstances beyond the control of the medical staff. Surgical errors frequently occur, though, and having access to recorded evidence may be helpful for patients who have been harmed because of a surgeon’s mistake or the actions of negligent operating room staff.
People and their families who have suffered because of mistakes made during a procedure may be able to be compensated for their losses. A medical malpractice attorney may be able to help victims and their loved ones by starting negotiations with the responsible parties and seeking a settlement or by filing a liability suit on the client’s behalf. Damages that are sought could include compensation for hospital bills, the cost of long-term care and, in cases of fatal surgical errors, loss of companionship.
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