Finding the right doctor or facility for your medical procedure or care can often create unimaginable stress for a patient. And while it may seem stressful or tedious, when it comes to your health, it’s important to not cut any corners.
It is generally recommended that you conduct thorough research prior to choosing a potential doctor or hospital. Part of this research includes looking for complaints against a doctor or a hospital.
Failure to do so may sometimes result in selecting a medical professional or facility with a history of complaints. Of course, some complaints might arise from disgruntled former patients with a strong grudge. However, other complaints could indicate deeper issues with the doctor or hospital that you are considering.
While no amount of research about a potential doctor or hospital can prevent any issues arising in your upcoming medical care or procedure with any certainty, it can certainly help you make a more informed decision. But where do you start your search?
Use our guide below to learn more about the various ways to find complaints against a doctor or hospital. If you have questions about these types of claims, contact the lawyer at Gladstein Law Firm, PLLC, today.
Common Types of Complaints Against a Doctor or a Hospital
Current and former patients can file a wide variety of complaints against a doctor or a hospital. Some of the most common complaints against medical professionals and facilities include:
- Misdiagnosing a patient;
- Unreasonable delay in diagnosing a patient;
- Performing unnecessary or inappropriate surgery;
- Recommending an unnecessary or inappropriate course of treatment;
- Discharging a patient prematurely;
- Inaccurate recordkeeping;
- Failing to provide discharge instructions; and
- Medication or prescription errors.
While the existence of these types of complaints doesn’t always mean you shouldn’t select a particular provider, it can be a potential red flag. If you see numerous complaints against a hospital or doctor containing the same or similar allegations, you might want to consider looking elsewhere.
If you have experienced any of these issues with your doctor or hospital, you could have a potential legal claim for relief. Contact a medical negligence attorney right away to discuss your case and options moving forward.
What Are Some Ways to Find Complaints Against a Doctor or a Hospital?
Many people aren’t sure where to start when it comes to searching for potential complaints against a prospective physician or facility. Luckily, there are a number of ways to find complaints filed against a particular doctor or hospital. You just have to know where to look.
State Medical Boards
One of the first places you can look is state medical boards.
Each state will have a state board that issues licenses for physicians and handles disciplinary matters. Your state’s medical board will keep a record of complaints against doctors that have been filed in the state.
Most states will have an online database where you can search for licensure information and disciplinary actions against a particular physician.
Additionally, if you’re not sure where to find medical board information in your state, you can search the Federation of State Medical Boards (FSMB) for its database of state-by-state doctor license and professional background information.
Some doctors or hospitals may be the subject of one or more lawsuits filed in a court of law.
The existence of a lawsuit on its own doesn’t necessarily mean the subject doctor or facility was responsible. However, a judgment against the medical professional or hospital does mean that they were legally liable. This can be crucial information in determining whom you want to be responsible for your medical care.
To find this information, you can check court records in your jurisdiction. The court records in your state will often contain the record of any medical malpractice lawsuit filed against a doctor within that state. Depending on your state, you can access the court records either through an online database or by going to the courthouse in person.
State Department of Health Services
Your state’s Department of Health Services also compiles records on past complaints against both hospitals and doctors. In these records, you can search for complaints against a particular hospital, private practice, or a specific doctor.
The Department of Health Services records should include information about past code violations and improper care reports against a hospital or doctor.
Local Medical Boards and Associations
Many cities and counties have local associations and regulatory bodies for medical professionals. These boards typically accept complaints from the public against physicians.
However, it’s important to note that for most of these organizations, doctors participate voluntarily. Thus, not every physician practicing in the area will be involved in these local boards or associations.
Health Insurance Carriers
Your health insurance carrier might also provide resources on hospitals or doctors in your network. The information health insurance carriers might offer includes a doctor’s:
- Work history,
- Education, and
- Specialization areas.
You might find this information on your health insurance carrier’s website, or you can call your health insurance representative. While your health insurance carrier may or may not include information about complaints, any information about options you are considering can be very helpful.
Better Business Bureau
Additionally, the Better Business Bureau (BBB) collects information and complaints on a multitude of different businesses. This also includes complaints against hospitals.
The BBB may show information about the doctor’s practice, such as billing complaints or unnecessary charges. Thus, the BBB offers another valuable resource to help you research complaints against potential hospitals before making a decision.
Have a Complaint Against a Doctor or Hospital?
Medical malpractice remains a serious and prevalent concern for many.
There are many steps you can take to better prevent becoming the victim of a medical malpractice injury. However, no amount of research or preparation can ensure that such an incident won’t occur.
If you have suffered an injury at the hands of your doctor or medical facility, we are ready to help. At Gladstein Law Firm, PLLC, we have helped our clients recover millions of dollars in valuable compensation. It’s our mission to help injured victims fight for justice, and we hope we have the opportunity to help you too.
Contact our team today for a free consultation to discuss your case and learn more about what Gladstein Law Firm, PLLC, can do for you.