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Pediatricians are sued for malpractice less than other doctors

A survey conducted by the American Academy of Pediatrics in 2015 showed that 20 percent of all pediatricians will be sued at some during their career. At least 10 percent of them end up getting sued during their residencies. These are just some of the many trends associated with medical malpractice cases filed against pediatricians.

Pediatricians age 39 or younger are only likely to be sued in less than 15 percent of all medical malpractice cases. The risk of being accused of negligence increases as a doctor ages. Between the ages of 40 and 49, a pediatrician's risk of being sued for climbs as high as 35 percent.

Researchers working on this 2013 Pediatrics study found that these doctors age 50 or older have a 50 percent chance of having to defend themselves against accusations of negligence.

As part of that same study, the researchers found that at least 50 percent of pediatric medical malpractice victims are less than a month old. Another 25 percent were between the age of 1 month and 1 year. The remaining 25 percent were 1 year or older.

Data compiled for a study published in Health Affairs in 2013 showed that pediatricians only spend approximately 7 percent of their time with open medical malpractice claims. This is on par with what dermatologists enjoy. Psychiatrists are the only doctor to perform better at around 4 percent. Neurologists spend at least 27 percent of their time involved in open medical malpractice lawsuits.

According to the Medical Professional Liability Association, some of the more common conditions that pediatric medical malpractice claims are filed for include meningitis, pneumonia and appendicitis. Ones filed on behalf of premature or brain-damaged infants or ones with respiratory problems are also common.

Like any situation, one size doesn't fit all. What may appear to be an appropriate plan of action for a doctor to have followed in one situation may not be ideal in another. That's why it's so difficult to identify if negligence may have occurred. The best option is to have a Chicago medical malpractice attorney review your case to see if that's indeed what occurred.

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