While there is a constant suggestion in the media that doctors are facing a barrage of medical malpractice lawsuits, often frivolous, the actual numbers paint a bit of a different picture.
According to a couple of recent studies, one error that commonly leads to medical malpractice claims is misdiagnosis of a patient's condition. One of the studies, which focused on medical malpractice claims against physicians over several years, determined that just under half of the claims, 46 percent, had something to do with a doctor's misdiagnosis of a patient's condition. Moreover, these claims account for over two-thirds, or 68 percent, of all payments made to cover claims for compensation.
When a patient is suffering from a progressive and/or fatal disease, early intervention is critical. And the first step in intervention is accurate and timely diagnosis. As just one example, many forms of cancer are treatable if caught early.