There are several reasons a patient may go to a hospital—some being worse than others. In many cases, the patient may require extensive care and procedures, and when the doctor feels the patient is better, they have to properly discharge the patient.
What happens, though, when the patient is allowed to leave the hospital without being discharged? Are there certain situations that can occur when the care manager and other staff members may be held accountable in this event? We explain below.
When Is the Hospital Negligent?
Typically, a patient can leave on their own accord. However, there are many situations where the patient cannot care for themselves or make their own decisions. In these cases, there is someone who is considered responsible for them and is authorized for the discharge of the patient.
If the patient cannot make their own decisions, and the hospital either allows them to leave before being discharged or release the patient to an unauthorized person, the hospital may be held accountable if the patient is subsequently injured or suffers fatal harm after leaving.
Other Situations That Can Make a Care Manager Liable
There are other situations that may apply with regards to liability for a care manager or hospital. This includes the following:
- When a patient suffers death or a serious disability after disappearing from the hospital
- When a patient suffers self-harm, attempted suicide, or suicide resulting in disability while being under the hospital’s watch
Hospitals are not just responsible for providing care. They must watch patients to ensure they are safe from harm, which includes disappearing from the hospital or an unauthorized individual removing them from the facility when the patient can’t make his or her own decisions.
If your loved one was seriously or fatally injured because of an oversight at the hospital, know that you have rights. Our Cleveland medical malpractice attorneys know that hospitals are expected to keep patients from leaving and must discharge them to authorized individuals when the patient is incoherent.