Medical malpractice lawsuits occur when a patient suffers harm under the care of a health care provider who failed to perform their duties competently. Each state has different rules regarding what action qualifies as medical malpractice. Some states require you to notify a medical professional of your legal proceedings ahead of time. Other stipulations and principal rules may apply in certain medical malpractice cases. A licensed professional in your state can best provide you with information regarding medical malpractice litigation.
Common Medical Malpractice Lawsuits
Johns Hopkins reports that medical errors are now the third leading cause of death for men and women in the United States (U.S.). In their study, Johns Hopkins determined that more than 250,000 fatalities relating to malpractice and negligence happen each year. Several situations may lead to a medical malpractice lawsuit.
When it comes to what qualifies as medical malpractice, the factors may fall into one of three categories:
Failure to Diagnose
Incorrectly diagnosing a health condition can lead to severe consequences for the patient’s chances of recovery. For example, if a doctor diagnoses a patient who has lung cancer with something less serious, like allergies, the patient will not get the prompt medical attention they need. If another medical professional in the same position correctly diagnosed the patient and administered appropriate care, the patient may have grounds for a medical malpractice claim.
If your doctor performs a treatment that no other doctor would reasonably provide, the patient may qualify to file a medical malpractice claim. Additionally, if the doctor chooses the right treatment but fails to administer it appropriately, the act qualifies as medical malpractice. If a professional treats a patient’s condition improperly at any time during their medical care, this qualifies as medical malpractice due to negligence.
Failing to Warn of Known Risks
A medical professional must tell a patient of all the known risks for any procedure or treatment. If the medical professional administers treatment that results in harm to the patient, and the patient would have refused the treatment had they known all of the risks, they may have the basis for a claim.
For a free legal consultation, call 800-641-8998
Requirements for Medical Malpractice Claims
States require medical malpractice claims to meet specific criteria.
To bring a civil action against a medical professional, you may have to show the following:
If you are going to file a medical malpractice claim, there are several things that you are going to need to prove. First, you will need to show that you and your doctor had a professional relationship. To do this, you will need to show that you had appointments with the doctor and that you paid them for your medical care.
Patients may meet this requirement quickly by using their medical bills and invoices as ample proof. There might be questions about the relationship between you and the doctor if a consulting physician did not administer your treatment.
You may not receive the outcome you wanted or expected from a medical procedure. However, this does not qualify as medical malpractice. To have a valid lawsuit, you must prove that the doctor negligently handled your diagnosis and treatment. You must demonstrate that the doctor caused you harm in a way that another professional, given the same set of circumstances, would not have.
The law does not require perfection from any caregiver, but they must operate with reasonable care and skill regarding your condition. Expert testimony from another medical expert will provide clarity on whether a patient’s attending caregiver deviated from standard practices.
Negligence Resulting in Injury
In addition to proving that your doctor acted negligently, you also must show that this negligence caused you harm which qualifies as medical malpractice.
Many malpractice cases involve patients whose conditions or injuries already existed, which leaves the question of whether the treatment provided by the doctor caused the individual unnecessary harm. For example, if a patient receives a diagnosis of lung cancer and passes away as a result, even if the doctor did something negligent, you may have difficulty proving the doctor’s actions caused their death. In a medical malpractice lawsuit, the patient must show that the doctor’s negligence or incompetence likely contributed to their injury.
Legal Help with Medical Malpractice Lawsuits
Medical malpractice lawsuits come with many complex regulations and rules. These regulations vary depending on the state that you live. For this reason, obtaining advice or representation from an attorney may go a long way in relieving you of legal burdens.
These types of cases require expert witnesses and plenty of evidence to prove negligence. If you believe that a medical professional mistreated you or a loved one in any way, contact Ben Crump Law, PLLC at 800-641-8998 to discuss your case in a free phone consultation.