Often, when people suffer harm at the hand of a medical practitioner, they settle with an apology from the doctor involved and hospital management. This is because they have very little information on their legal rights and whether they can file a medical malpractice claim to recover damages.
As a general rule, every victim of medical malpractice has the right to seek redress in a court of law, and they can do this with the help of a Lakeland medical malpractice lawyer. However, some factors must apply to you before you can bring a malpractice action for personal injury.
Basic Requirements For A Medical Malpractice Claim
Medical malpractice happens when a doctor or other medical professional harms a patient during treatment by inefficiently carrying out their duties. Before you can sue for damages under this head, you must show:
The Existence Of A Doctor-Patient Relationship
You can’t bring a malpractice claim against any doctor just because you feel like it. You must show that there was a doctor-patient relationship between you and the defendant. The medical personnel must have been in charge of your care, and not a random physician who had no direct contact with you.
An Act Of Negligence By The Doctor
Most patients are already sick or injured, making it tricky to prove that a doctor caused an injury under this head, as it is not always physical. To prove an injurious negligent act, you must show that the physician’s negligent act changed the primary outcome of your treatment. You must also show that the doctor’s incompetence directly caused the injury and get an expert’s opinion on how it occurred.
The Negligent Act Caused The Injury
Being unhappy with your treatment course does not mean you can sue a doctor for malpractice. You have to link negligent acts with the harm caused to your person by a misdiagnosis or wrong treatment. You must show that a competent doctor would not have caused the damage under the same circumstances. The law does not require the physician’s care to be the best, but they must be “reasonably skillful and careful.”
The Injury Gave Rise To A Specific Problem
Even if it is evident that the doctor was not reasonably skillful or careful in treating you, you can’t file a lawsuit if you did not suffer any injury. Common damages suffered by patients are:
- Physical pain;
- Mental anguish;
- The additional cost of treatment uncovered by insurance; and
- Lost work and earning capacity
Types Of Medical Malpractice Lawsuits
Having established the basic requirements, you must prove before bringing a malpractice claim; we will talk about the types of medical malpractice you can bring against a doctor. They include:
Failure To Accurately Diagnose
Getting misdiagnosed is one of the common medical malpractice lawsuits. Misdiagnosis is an incorrect conclusion about the cause of a disease or problem. About 12 million people in the United States are affected by misdiagnosis errors yearly, and an estimated 40,000 to 80,000 die from arising complications. If you or anyone you know had a wrong diagnosis, contact Lakeland medical malpractice attorneys for legal advice.
An improper treatment occurs when a patient receives treatment that is not sufficient to remedy their medical condition. It could also mean that the doctor gave the proper treatment but failed to administer it adequately. An example is giving the wrong dosage of drugs or injections to a patient.
Failure To Warn A Patient Of Known Risks
It is a rule that medical practitioners must warn patients of any and every risk associated with a particular treatment plan or procedure. It is known as the duty of informed consent, and failure to carry it out is considered medical malpractice. If the doctor informs the patient of the risks, and the individual chooses to go ahead with the treatment, the physician won’t be held liable for any resulting harm.
Other Factors To Keep In Mind
Now that you know that you are right to sue for medical malpractice, here are some factors to keep in mind:
- You must bring the lawsuit as soon as possible, usually within the first two years from the time the injury occurred.
- You must give the doctor notice of the malpractice claim.
- You must get an expert opinion to prove your case.
Are You A Victim Of Medical Malpractice? Consult Burnetti, P.A.
Physicians have the task of providing the best care, and failure to do this leads to severe consequences, including loss of life. If you have suffered from a doctor’s negligent act, you need one of Burnetti, P.A.’s medical malpractice lawyers in Lakeland, Florida, to get you the deserved compensation. Contact us today for a free virtual consultation.