Knoxville Hospital Infection Attorney
Hospital-acquired infections aren’t present when someone is admitted to the hospital. Facilities must maintain clean and safe hospital environments. Failure to take proper precautions can leave patients susceptible to deadly infections. Some of the most common infections involve the urinary tract, surgical site, bloodstream infections, and the respiratory system. If you or someone you love suffered a Tennessee hospital-acquired infection, you could have a valid medical malpractice claim. To learn more, contact the Knoxville medical malpractice attorneys at Atkins Brezina, PLLC, today.
What Is a Hospital-Acquired Infection?
A hospital-acquired infection is generally one that occurs in a medical facility setting and is not linked to the patient’s health issues or diagnosis. A patient can become infected in several ways:
- Patients who are severely ill or injured have weakened immune systems, making them more vulnerable to infections. Being in a hospital for an extended period can increase their risk.
- The hospital must be clean, and the tools used should be sterile. Any medical devices, water systems, or bed linens that aren’t cleaned or adequately sterilized increase a patient’s risk of hospital-acquired infection.
- Healthcare providers must always maintain certain standards of cleanliness when taking care of their patients. Failure to use safety protocols or adequately wash their hands can open the door to possible infection. These healthcare providers draw blood, insert catheters, intubate, etc. The risk of infection can increase when they haven’t thoroughly washed their hands.
Common Types of Hospital-Acquired Infections
Medical facilities use many instruments and invasive medical devices while treating patients, even during rehab and recovery. These can introduce foreign bacteria into the patient’s system. Some of the most common hospital-acquired infections include:
- Ventilator-associated pneumonia
- Central line-associated bloodstream infections
- Surgical site infections
- Catheter-associated urinary tract infections
The High Risk of Sepsis
Hospital-acquired infections can quickly turn into life-threatening situations. Symptoms of sepsis include elevated heart rate, body-wide inflammation, internal organ damage, and fever. Some of these infections are challenging to treat because they are immune to specific antibiotics.
One of the most common infections in this context is a Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus Aureus (or “MRSA”), which is resistant to traditional treatment methods like antibiotics. MRSA and other hospital-acquired infections can be very aggressive and can result in severe injuries. In the most severe cases, a patient may need an amputation or may die.
Determining Who Is Liable
Determining who is liable in these situations is complicated. It can be challenging, as there are some cases where the healthcare professionals and/or hospital did nothing wrong. In other situations, medical negligence is to blame. Before you can determine who is responsible, we need to investigate the circumstances around the hospital-acquired infection. We will most likely need to hire medical experts who can offer their opinion on whether the defendants complied with appropriate medical Standards of Care.
Contact a Knoxville Medical Malpractice Attorney
If you or someone you love developed a hospital-acquired infection, you need an experienced Knoxville medical malpractice attorney. Contact Atkins Brezina, PLLC, today to schedule an initial consultation.