Urgent Care Centers have been opening all around New York City and the US these recent years but are they really safe? Here are the most common acute care medical malpractice risks:
- Patient is being send home with a very abnormal vital sign without a re-evaluation of that abnormal sign
- Poor risk factor evaluation happens when practitioners forget to ask important questions about the medical history of the patient
- Missing charts and documentation especially for patients with pain related to the abdominal system or the neurological system
- Failure to evaluate pain radiation
- Wounds complications related to improper wound care represent 25% of all cases against emergency care providers
- Poor discharge instructions
- Not checking on the immunization status of febrile children
- No re-evaluation of the patient
- Failure to diagnose compartment syndrome. Even though compartment syndrome is not very common, there is a very high rate of failure to diagnose it.
- Failure to diagnose new issues. For example a patient who suffer from severe back pain with no mechanism of injury may be discharged with a diagnosis of back pain or muskuloskeletal strain while he may have a perispinal abscess caused by a community MRSA.
More information about these common risks of medical malpractice in urgent care settings can be found in a recent pdf published by The Sullivan Group. Even though the document pursue a commercial purpose, it still provides an accurate check list of the most common medical error committed by urgent care doctors and staff.
A few a years ago the NBC I-Team investigated Urgent Care Centers and found out that even though they were becoming very popular because of their convenience, they were not up to date with regulatory standards and that more transparencey was needed in reagrds to communicating to the patients who was treating them.