Medical malpractice can occur from an act of professional negligence or omission by a physician or healthcare provider. Medical malpractice may involve error on the part of a physician but can also occur due to the failure of a medical device or to adverse complications from a medication. When providing care or treatment to a patient, a physician or healthcare professional assumes a legal duty to provide a standard of care established by the medical community. Any deviation from the standard of care that causes injury or death to a patient can be medical malpractice. According to the Institute of Medicine, medical errors result in the deaths of approximately 98,000 Americans annually and cause serious injury to many others. Research has shown that the majority of medical errors are preventable.
Do I Have A Medical Malpractice Case
A mistake or omission can occur at any time during the course of medical treatment. Certain important legal issues must be established in order for you to prevail in a successful medical malpractice lawsuit. You must prove that a legal duty was owed by the medical professional. This duty is established when a health care professional begins medical care or treatment. It must be established that the legal duty was breached by the provider by failing to apply the standard of care established in the medical community and that the medical professional’s breach of care caused an injury to you that resulted in damages. Without damages, the plaintiff does not have a legal basis for filing a medical malpractice lawsuit.
Medical malpractice cases are widespread and encompass many issues including surgical errors, misdiagnoses, emergency room neglect and prescription drug errors.
When Should I Contact A Medical Malpractice Lawyer
After obtaining medical treatment or diagnosis of a condition or injury caused by the negligence of a healthcare professional, it is important to seek legal advice from a medical malpractice lawyer immediately. It is crucial to begin legal action within a specific time period, known as the statute of limitations.
The statute of limitations varies according to jurisdiction, but is usually two years after you have been injured or harmed. In some states, the statute of limitations can be extended, depending on when you were diagnosed with a condition or injury resulting from the negligence.