How do hospitals push the blame for malpractice on independent contractors such as anesthesiologists?
July 9, 2018
My friend is an anesthesiologist and he recently lost a patient (a really high profile case) while he was in recovery. The surgeon is employed by the hospital but my friend is not. The patient's very rich family is suing for malpractice. My friend feels the hospital is trying to make it look like it was his fault to save themselves, but he says it was clearly a surgical error. He even said some records were falsified. Is it possible for a hospital to "frame" an anesthesiologist for malpractice in order to save themselves a huge lawsuit? How far would they go with this?
An anesthesiologist's fear that the hospital is looking to lay blame on them is reason for the anesthesiologist to have their own counsel - separate from the hospital. Falsification of medical records is very serious, and the anesthesiologist needs to talk to their lawyer about this. It's likely all physicians involved in the surgery were named as parties from the outset of the case. If it was 'clearly surgical error' and there were no errors in anesthesia then he/she should have nothing to worry about - it should become clear as the case progresses. The anesthesiologist needs to speak with his/her malpractice insurance company about getting their own lawyer.
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