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New York ranks No. 1 for medical malpractice payouts

A doctor's incorrect action -- or inaction -- can lead to serious and life-altering injuries for patients. In a number of cases, these mistakes can even be deadly. Many times, these injuries or deaths also lead to medical malpractice lawsuits, which in turn can result in settlements or judgments. Either way, a good number of hospitals and healthcare facilities end up paying out to injured patients or grieving family members.

Recently, an analysis of 2012 medical malpractice payouts was made public. This analysis showed that there were 12,142 medical malpractice payouts last year, with five states making up the majority of those payouts.

New York was in the lead with $763,088,250 in medical malpractice payouts. This was followed by Pennsylvania, California, New Jersey and Florida. These five states combined made up 48 percent of the total medical malpractice payouts in the U.S.

The reasons behind many of these medical malpractice lawsuits ranged from failure to diagnose to surgical errors.

In terms of what happened to the patients in these cases, 31 percent resulted in a death, while 37 percent led to a permanent injury.

For the New York patient who suffers an injury due to a medical error, know there are options. Depending on the case this could end up resulting in a payout or favorable judgment. And while compensation certainly will not take away from what happened, it does send the message that these types of mistakes will not be tolerated, while also providing money that can go toward any necessary ongoing treatments.

Source: Renal and Urology News, "Five States Responsible for Nearly Half of All 2012 Payouts," Ann W. Latner, Sept. 9, 2013

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