Valenzuela Law Firm, PA | Trial Attorney
Attorney Henry E. Valenzuela

Can I file a claim for long wait times in the emergency room?

On Behalf of | Apr 26, 2023 | Medical Malpractice

Going to the emergency room is not a fun experience. If you are heading there to receive treatment, you must go through standard procedures to adequately address your condition. Sometimes, you must wait a long time because the staff is busy helping patients in more critical situations.

Long wait times in the emergency room could be typical, especially when other patients have more severe injuries or illnesses. However, if your condition deteriorates due to the unreasonably long wait time, you can file a medical malpractice claim based on the circumstances.

Delaying diagnosis, treatment and failing to provide a certain standard of care could be an act of negligence by the health care provider. Your illness or injury could worsen if they fail to diagnose and treat you soon enough. If that is the case, it might be a medical malpractice.

However, these incidents require thorough investigations. They can help reveal if your wait time was unreasonably long and if receiving treatment sooner would have produced a better outcome.

It can also show if the health care provider breached the prevailing professional standard of care, causing you harm.

How long should wait times be in the emergency room?

Unfortunately, there are no standard durations for wait times in emergency rooms. However, hospitals follow specific systems to get patients through triage so that they can receive treatment on time.

Emergency rooms might also use computer algorithms to get you medical attention within an appropriate period. However, algorithms are not perfect and could cause problems or delays.

Sometimes, your condition might not be as bad as you think, putting you at a lower priority level than other patients. However, it does not justify your worsening health under unjust circumstances.

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