What is the hospital’s responsibility

My wife was admitted to the emergency room of the hospital for rectal
bleeding and the problem is resolved and she is back home. She was in her
assigned bed and needed to go to the bathroom and called for the nurse.
The nurse came in and assisted her to the bathroom but not in the
bathroom. My wife fainted, passed out, or got dizzy and fell and hit and cut
her chin as a result of the fall. The nurse found her on the floor and got her
in bed and stopped the bleeding. The hospital eventually did suture the cut,
gave her a neck collar, and gave her a ‘Fall’ risk. Now she has dizzy spells.
Should I approach the hospital.

Asked on April 29, 2016 under Malpractice Law, Arizona

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 4 years ago | Contributor

The hospital is not automatically liable--they are not responsible for all injuries, even all patient injuries, on their premises. Rather, they would be liable if they had been at fault in some way. Fault will depend on whether the nurse was negligent, or unreasonably careless, in not assisting your wife in the bathroom. That in turn depends on your wife's condition at the time she fell: quite simply, some patients need bathroom assistance, and some do not. If she did not, then it was not negligent to not assist her, and there would be no liability.
Speak to a medical malpractice attorney: many provide a free initial consultation to evaluate a case, and you can inquire into this before making an appointment. The lawyer can evaluate the strength of your case (how likely you'd be to win) as well as what it may be worth (the amount of money you can get is related to the severity and duration of any injuries or symptoms, and to the additional costs, if any, you incur)--since medical malpractice cases can be very expensive, a weak case, or cases not worth a lot of money, are generally not worth pursuing. After speaking to the lawyer, you can decide what to do.


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