Need To Know Facts of Medical Malpractice
What is Medical Malpractice?
• Medical malpractice refers to a professional act of negligence or glaring omission, delivered by a medical professional or health care provider.
• Medical malpractice is an illegal action; the negligent care provided by a medical institution or medical professional precipitates an injury or death to the patient.
• All medical professionals as well as health care providers must adhere to the established regulations and standards instituted by the state government (as well as the federal government) in which they operate out of. Although these regulations vary by location, general human’s rights issues are enshrouded in the code. Any care that blatantly disrupts a patient’s health or any procedures that are improperly administered, or conducted with negligence that precipitate an injury or death may be tried in a court system under the statutes which govern medical malpractice.
• Typically medical malpractice cases are initiated by patients who feel they have been misdiagnosed, mistreated, or handled with negligence. These patients, as a result of the faulty medical care, become inflicted with increased bodily damage or even death. Following this unfortunate circumstance, the patient or the patient’s family, will then initiate a medical malpractice suit in the hopes of retaining a financial settlement to recoup the monetary and emotional damages that were caused from the mistreatment. In addition to compensatory rulings, more severe medical malpractice cases—typically those that result in the premature death of the patient–will evaluate the doctor’s or medical professional’s motives in relation to an involuntary manslaughter charge.
• As a result of the financial issues which surround a medical malpractice charge, all medical professionals are required to assume and maintain professional liability insurance. These policies are designed to offset the risk and the legal costs that stem from medical malpractice charges.
• Depending on the circumstances, a doctor or medical professional would be liable, and thus susceptible to a medical malpractice charge, for such maneuvers as prescribing experimental drugs, performing cosmetic surgeries, or initiating alternative-based surgeries or medical treatments to a patient.
Elements of a Medical Malpractice Case
• In a medical malpractice suit, the plaintiff is the patient, or a legally designated party who acts on behalf of the patient—these parties are assigned in wrongful death suits. In contrast, the defendant is the health care provider or medical professional who precipitated the injury or death.
• In order to receive a favorable ruling, a plaintiff must establish and definitively prove the following four elements of tort negligence:
1. A duty must be owed; a legal duty is realized whenever a health care provider or medical professional undertakes care or delivers treatment for a patient.
2. The duty then must be breached; the provider must fail to meet and conform to the relevant standards of care. The standard of care is examined based on expert testimony or through the observance of obvious errors. The standard care refers to the normal treatment methods for similar medical issues.
3. The breach, meaning the negligent action or omission, must precipitate bodily injury; the breach must be a proximate cause of the physical injury.
4. The patient must suffer from physical damages; without the presence of damages (the losses may be emotional or pecuniary) there is no true basis for a claim. This notion exists, regardless of whether the provider was negligent.