Published on July 19th, 2019
When you have put your trust and your health in the hands of a medical professional and then end up with less than the standard care, it can be heartbreaking and damaging. Medical malpractice lawsuits can be complex as well as physically and emotionally draining. Taking action as a result of malpractice is something that you need to research and hire a knowledgeable attorney.
Establishing a solid case that clearly outlines how the medical field failed you requires experience and expertise. Determining causation and liability should be left in the hands of an attorney that knows how to navigate the system.
Malpractice laws vary by state, so knowing your rights and the laws in your area is one of the first steps. If you have been injured due to medical malpractice and considering pursuing a lawsuit there are certain constants, regardless of state that you will need to know.
What Is Malpractice?
General malpractice occurs when a patient receives a substandard level of care from the medical professionals. The formal definition of malpractice is:
The type and level of care that an ordinary, prudent health care professional, with the same training and experience would provide under similar circumstances in the same community.
In layman’s terms, this means that a patient should expect to be treated the same by every medical professional with the same level of care.
1. Establishing Standard Of Care
To have a malpractice case to be moved forward you will need to establish the general standard of care. This will require bringing in a medical professional in the same field to make a witnessed statement claiming that there was neglect. They will need to be able to testify what the expected standard of care is for each specific field and how it was not met or how the patient was neglected.
2. Affidavit Of Merit
An affidavit of merit is not required by all states, but should still be obtained prior to all case filings. The affidavit will serve as testimony from an expert witness that the malpractice case has validity. The courts will not allow your claim to proceed unless you have a witness that can corroborate your claim that substandard care has occurred, causing damage or injury. You may need to have this completed prior to being permitted to file your claim.
3. Malpractice Examples
There are many kinds of malpractice that can span all areas of medicine. As the definition implies, if the expected standard of care is not met you may be able to file a claim. The most common cases of medical malpractice include, but are not limited to:
- The heartbeat and trauma level of an unborn child is not properly monitored during delivery, causing a birth injury
- Surgical instruments or sponges are not properly accounted for following a procedure
- Proper levels of anesthesia are not monitored, causing injury
- Medications are administered without consideration for possible or listed allergy reactions
- Methods for proper lifting and transportation are not used, causing injury
- Failure to diagnose disease following examination
Suffering an injury at the hands of the medical profession can be devastating both physically and emotionally. You are supposed to be able to expect to receive only the highest standard of medical care in any facility.
When the profession falls short, you have the right to seek compensation for your injuries. Talk to a malpractice attorney today to discuss your rights and the possibility of filing a case.