Medical malpractice can have dire consequences.

Arizona residents might be surprised to learn that thousands of patients die each year around the country as a result of hospital negligence. Many times, hospital administrators even try to cover up these mistakes out of fear of litigation. Defective surgical instruments, hospital infections, and nursing errors can result in devastating consequences.

A program by the name of Candor, short for Communication and Optimal Resolution, has taken on the problem of medical negligence. The program aims to encourage honesty on the part of hospitals. Under Candor, hospital administration is required to tell patients when they have been injured or have lost a loved one due to medical errors. The patient and the hospital administration will then work together to develop a way to make up for the mistake financially. One important part of Candor is the closure that patients receive when they are told that hospital staff made a mistake and an apology is offered.

Many hospitals currently deny any wrongdoing or hide incriminating evidence from patients. Even if a hospital adheres to the tenets of Candor, it is still recommended that the patient have an attorney review the terms of the proposed settlement.

Individuals whose conditions have worsened due to a misdiagnosis or have lost a family member due to a hospital error have the right to know the details of their case. They also have to right to be compensated for their losses if it can be demonstrated that the mistake rose to the level of malpractice, and an attorney will attempt to make this determination on the basis of the patient’s hospital records and the opinions of medical experts.