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Expert Tips to Protect Yourself from a Medical Error

February 26, 2011

There are published reports indicating that as many as one hundred thousand people die every year due to preventable medical errors. These alarming statistics place medical errors as one of the top causes of death in our country. According to a number of health care organizations and patients' advocacy groups, there are plenty of ways that Americans can safeguard themselves against being a victim of medical malpractice.

Many patients' advocacy groups offer tips on how to protect yourself from being a victim of medical malpractice and save yourself from having to hire a Chicago medical malpractice lawyer to spearhead your medical error lawsuit. What follows below is a list of tips many patients' rights groups have offered to help reduce the risk of becoming a victim of medical negligence:

First of all, it is important to keep comprehensive medical records for yourself. Make sure that you keep these records in a safe place where you can access them quickly if needed. You will want to include a comprehensive listing of every prescription and non-prescription drug that you are taking. Also, make sure that your regular physician is well aware of every single prescription drug, non-prescription drug, vitamin, and supplement that you take.

Next, take the time to research every doctor, specialist, and practice that you have to visit. There are a number of ways that you can research a doctor or medical care facility. You can find out if the health care provider is registered with the American Medical Association by using resources on their website. You can also look at a number of independent sites that have a large amount of information about doctors compiled in their databases. This information may include their licensing data along with other helpful info.

Then, learn how to speak up about your health and voice your concerns to medical care providers. Remember that you are paying them for a service and that you should expect a reasonable level of care in return. Don't hesitate to ask questions about prescriptions or your diagnosis, especially if you do not understand the terminology that is being used by your physician.

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