Denver Paramedic and EMT Malpractice Attorneys
Paramedics and EMTs have a duty of care to the people they serve, based on their training as providers of emergency medical services. In many cases, they provide the first care a patient receives in an emergency.
At Leventhal Puga Braley P.C., our trial lawyers help patients get compensation when they have suffered catastrophic injury or wrongful death due to the negligent actions of healthcare providers. If you or a loved one is suffering the consequences of medical malpractice, call (303) 759-9945 to learn more today.
An EMT is an Emergency Medical Technician who provides care to patients and transports them to a healthcare facility. EMTs can administer CPR, glucose, and oxygen. In Colorado, an EMT must have the following qualifications:
- Be at least 18 years of age
- Has completed 120 hours of EMT training from a state-approved training center
- Has completed CPR training
- Received a passing score on the National Registry of Medical Technicians (NREMT) examination
- Is fluent in English
- Has provided proof of physical and mental health
- Has undergone a criminal background check
- Completes at least 36 hours Continuing Education courses every three years to maintain their license
Some first responders on an emergency medical team may be paramedics. Paramedics have a higher level of education than EMTs and they are allowed to perform more procedures.
Emergency medical service providers can commit malpractice in several ways, including:
- Delay in responding to an emergency situation
- Providing treatment that they are not trained, certified, or permitted to perform
- Failure to follow standard evaluation protocols
- Misdiagnosis of a patient’s condition at the scene of response or in the ambulance
- Improper placement on an IV line
- Failure to administer necessary medications, or administration of inappropriate medications
- Failure to have life-saving materials on hand, such as oxygen, epinephrine (for severe allergic reactions), and naloxone HCI (for drug overdose)
- Rough patient handling or reckless driving leading to further injury
- Failure to stabilize a critically ill patient
- Failure to check the patient’s vital signs
- Failure to provide correct information to emergency room staff
In some cases, a party other than the EMT or paramedic may be liable for a patient’s injuries. For example:
- Dispatchers who give incorrect information to emergency medical service providers
- Doctors who give incorrect instructions verbally over the phone to EMTs or paramedics
- Emergency services companies that fail to provide sufficient training in the use of new equipment for emergency workers
- Emergency services companies that insufficiently staff their ambulances
The same medical malpractice laws that apply to doctors and nurses cover the negligent actions of EMTs and paramedics. They are responsible for any lack of care or diligence, and they may be held liable for injury, damages, or the wrongful death of a patient.
To win a case based on negligence, an attorney must show:
- The paramedic or EMT had a duty of care to provide competent emergency medical services.
- The paramedic or EMT breached that duty of care.
- The breach of care on the part of the EMT or paramedic was a cause of your harm.
- You suffered damages as a result.
To prove that an EMT or paramedic violated the standard of care, a malpractice lawyer must demonstrate that they failed to provide the level of care that we can reasonably expect from a trained and capable EMT or paramedic in the same circumstances.
If you have been injured through paramedic or EMT negligence, you may be entitled to recover compensation for your losses. This compensation may include economic damages, such as past and future medical expenses, lost wages, and loss of earning capacity, and noneconomic damages, such as pain and suffering, emotional distress, and loss of enjoyment of life. Our Denver medical malpractice lawyer can tell you if you have a case and what damages you may be entitled to claim.
Aside from the different statutes of limitations that may govern your claim, there may be governmental immunity and notice of claim concerns that must be investigated and addressed within the time limit proscribed by law. For example, in Colorado, some paramedics and EMTs work for facilities that claim governmental immunity under the Colorado Governmental Immunity Act (CGIA). The CGIA requires you to give notice of the state as outlined in the statute.
At Leventhal Puga Braley P.C., we have more than 40 years of experience successfully representing clients injured through medical negligence. Our firm has won two of the highest medical malpractice verdicts ever awarded in Colorado. Our partners have been recognized among the top lawyers in Colorado and the U.S.
There is no charge for your initial consultation. Call us at (303) 759-9945 or toll-free at (877) 433-3906 for legal help if paramedic or EMT medical malpractice has caused you harm.