November 8, 2018
Medical malpractice encompasses the liability on doctors and the treatment they provide to their patients by rendering their services in a negligent manner. Every state has its own set of laws and procedures to cater these specialized personal injury cases. However, a doctor is held if his/her conduct fails to meet the “standard operating procedures of care” which are provided by other doctors under similar conditions.
Errors that qualify as medical malpractice falls into the following categories, such as: misreading X-ray reports, delay in diagnosing a patient’s condition, prescribing the wrong pharmaceuticals, failing to warn a patient of the potential risks or side effects of a procedure, making a mistake during surgery or childbirth, and performing services without the patient’s informed consent. Therefore, when the doctor’s act carelessly, the results can be disastrous for the patient. Hence, in such a situation the damage awards in medical malpractice cases are among the largest of all personal injury cases. Such damages include physical pain or suffering, medical expenses, lost wages, emotional distress, punitive damages, and compensation for partial or complete impairment, disfigurement or in the event of death.
Moving along with this, expert witnesses play a significant role in medical malpractice cases. The most frequently debated issues in these cases are: whether a surgery was performed correctly or not, such cases are too difficult to comprehend and understand on their own for the jury even. This leaves the room for other qualified doctors to come, study the case, render an opinion and then explain their findings. Besides this, for the injured patient, the expense of hiring an expert for bringing the claim significantly increases.
Large damage awards are opposed in medical malpractice by the elected officials or a number of policy groups. The reason behind this resistance is to pass a legislation, and making it more difficult for the injured people to file lawsuits, and to cap the number of damages. Proponents of this resistance argue that it will reduce the cost of health care. However, the data is inconclusive, and the issue remains highly contentious.
Reparation for your Suffering
The first and the foremost step in pursuing a medical malpractice case is to hire an expert attorney. Self-representation is not feasible in such cases. Therefore, it is good to have a seasoned attorney by your side. The attorney will begin by doing an in-depth evaluation of the factual circumstances encompassing the incident. Further, a collection of records and depositions will also be taken of the defendant. After this, a medical expert will be called who will testify at trial. Then, they will review the evidence, and they will draft a report for the plaintiff.
It is advisable that during the whole process that the plaintiff’s lawyer must comply with all the procedural legal requirements. As a single misstep results in the case being dismissed. These requirements include a statute of limitations that is a strict deadline for filing the paperwork to begin the lawsuit. Hence, in such a grim and critical situation it is imperative to have a skilled Medical Malpractice lawyer by your side that can guide you throughout the whole process.