Emergency Room Errors and Negligence

Our medical malpractice lawyers have won millions in verdicts and settlements at trial for our clients. Contact us today to review your case for free.

Written and edited by our team of expert legal content writers and reviewed and approved by Daniel Harwin

vertical gold line
horizontal gold line

Table of Contents

Emergency room (ER) mistakes are distressingly common. You might not realize just how easily an ER error can occur until it happens to you. At Freedland Harwin Valori, PL we’ve helped many clients seek justice after ER mistakes. Sometimes patients are discharged from the ER even though they present with signs and symptoms of a serious problem. Poor communication, sending patients away, and failures to diagnose can all result in unnecessary patient harm or death. If you find yourself in need of legal representation for a Florida medical malpractice claim, contact us.

Types of Emergency Room Mistakes

It is the plaintiff’s burden to prove the defendant’s negligence to recover financial compensation for damages. In the eyes of the courts, any action or failure to act that falls within the realm of the defendant’s responsibilities to the plaintiff, resulting in the plaintiff’s harm, is negligence. The first step in proving liability is recognizing the mistake the defendant made that caused or contributed to your injuries. Some of the most common errors that result in medical malpractice lawsuits are as follows:

  • Refusing patient care. All patients, regardless of income, insurance, gender, race, religion, or disability, qualify for emergency medical care. Sending a patient home because of his/her inability to pay or due to biases against a protected class can be medical malpractice. It also can be malpractice to turn away a patient when he or she presents with a life-threatening condition.
  • Failure to diagnose (FTD) a heart attack or myocardial infarction. Failure to diagnose heart attack is a common ER mistake due to improper testing methods and negligent doctors. A doctor could misdiagnose heart attack symptoms such as fatigue, shortness of breath, weakness, nausea, or pain in the back or shoulders for other, less serious conditions. Failure to diagnose a heart attack, resulting in lack of proper treatment, can be fatal for the patient.
  • Failure to diagnose a deep vein thrombosis (DVT) or pulmonary embolism (PE). Diagnosing potentially life-threatening blood issues in the ER requires blood tests, MRIs, CT scans, and a thorough review of the patient’s medical history. Sending a patient with DVT or PE home without proper diagnosis or treatment can result in blood clots traveling to the heart or lungs and killing the patient.
  • Failure to diagnose a stroke or impending stroke. Patients experiencing stroke symptoms such as arm weakness, tingling, numbness, speech difficulty, or facial drooping may visit an ER for evaluation. If negligent staff members fail to properly diagnose a stroke or a high risk of stroke, this can result in lack of necessary emergency treatment. Failing to treat or prevent a stroke due to misdiagnosis is an example of malpractice.

Patient mix-ups, improper medical care, adverse medication reactions, prescription errors, misdiagnosis, delayed diagnosis, emergency surgery mistakes, and failing to order the appropriate medical tests are all types of ER mistakes. If a “reasonable and prudent” physician, nurse, or facility would have done something differently to prevent the plaintiff’s damages, juries may find that the defendant was negligent, and therefore liable for the patient’s harm. Help from an attorney can go a long way in proving an ER error claim in Florida. Call our firm to learn more during a free confidential consultation.

contact us pic

free consultation anytime, anywhere.





550 S Andrews Ave
Ste 630
Fort Lauderdale, FL 33301



999 Ponce De Leon Blvd 
Suite 1030
Coral Gables, FL 33134