Understanding Medical Malpractice

A case of medical malpractice occurs when a medical practitioner, such as a doctor or a nurse, does not correctly perform their duty of care and end up actually harming a patient instead. The rules surrounding malpractice vary from state to state and impact upon things like when you need to notify the medical practitioner in question to when the lawsuit must be brought about. However, there are many broad rules and general principles that apply to these types of cases no matter what state it happens in.

Medical malpractice

Claim Requirements

In order to show that you have been subject to medical malpractice, you need to show the following things:

- The medical practitioner was negligent - simply being unhappy with the service that you have received or are unhappy with the outcome of the surgery or medication prescribed does not mean that the medical practitioner was negligent. To be able to bring about a case of malpractice, you must be positive that they caused you harm where a competent medical practitioner would not have. 

- Specific damages were caused - Even if it has been proved that the medical practioner did cause the harm through malpractice, a case cannot be brought if they did not experience any harm as a result of it. Some of the types of pain that a patient can sue for include mental anguish, physical pain, loss of earnings through lack of capacity, and additional medical bills. 

- There was a pre existing relationship - it must be the case that you and the medical practitioner in question had some sort of pre existing relationship in place before the case of medical malpractice happened. For instance, you hired a doctor and paid for the personalised service that they provided. 

- The injury was caused by negligence - with most cases of medical malpractice involving patients who are already sick or ill, then it can be difficult to know if it was the negligence that caused the harm that has been sustained. The patient must be able to prove that ‘more than likely’ the actions of the medical practitioner is what caused the harm.

Types Of Medical Malpractice

There are a number of situations that can cause a case of medical malpractice, including things such as improper treatment, failing to diagnose, and failing to warn of any known risks. In the most extreme of cases, this can see a medical practitioner leave an instrument inside of a patient when performing surgery or not telling a patient that a drug that they prescribe could possibly cause them heart issues. Where this happens, it is a clear case of medical malpractice and a case can be brought again the medical practitioner

Getting Help For Medical Malpractice

Having read all of the above, if you think that you may have been subject to a case of medical malpractice then there are numerous different law attorneys out there who can help to pursue your case for you on your behalf - one such law firm is Baker and Gilchrist in Indiana or see articles from Stability Healthcare to know more.

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About the Author

Stella Cooter

Journalist, traveller and mother, Stella writes about fashion and style, luxury and adventure.

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