Cases of medical malpractice will only arise when a medical patient got injured through improper procedures or actions and negligence made by a medical facility or a healthcare professional. For a medical negligence to be actionable there should be a duty owed to another party whereas a breach of that duty resulted to damage or harm. In addition, in order for a negligence to be actionable, it should have all necessary components that will constitute a possible cause of action.
Different state laws govern the possibility of action causes for medical practice. The laws may vary in terms of proper party defendants or plaintiffs, cognizable theories of liability, qualifications of expert witnesses, and limited time to bring suit. Some of these terms may be common requisites for all medical malpractice cases but some may not.
Before a medical malpractice case is identified, the physician must be proven to owe a duty to the patients. In this way, the competency of the physician in performing the duty can be judged. For instance in a restaurant a customer is suffering a heart attack and a doctor is in the house yet he or she did not do an action to help the suffering customer, there would be no case of medical malpractice can be filed against the doctor. However, once the doctor volunteered himself or herself to help the ailing customer, the doctor becomes liable for any injury or damage that may arise from negligence.
Negligence of the patients is also a defense to medical malpractice. However, this defense may come in different forms that include:
- The patient was also negligent and caused much of the harm or damage that happened to him or her.
- The patient failed to alleviate the harm or damage happened to him and her whereas the results even lead to worse condition.
- The patient provided an informed consent thus assumed the risks of any untoward effects or complications.
- The so-called harm or damage was unavoidable or claimed as known risk that occurs without negligence.
- The patient failed to unveil important information to the physician.
- The condition or prognosis of the patient was not worsened by the so-called negligence.
- The patient is engaged in some superseding or intervening conduct following the suspected malpractice that ruined the sequence of events of the case.
Medical malpractice may include error in illness management, treatment, or diagnosis. Once negligence is proven from these errors, a legal case of medical malpractice can be filed against the doctor due to variations of the accepted standards of medical malpractice; the hospital for inadequate training or improper care such as problems with sanitation or medications; and the local federal agencies or sate that operate the hospital facilities.
Medical malpractice laws are devised to protect the rights of the patients in pursuing compensation from their injury or damage resulting from negligence. However, filing lawsuits of medical malpractice are often complicated and expensive to win. Therefore, it is important to consult a lawyer who can discuss the case with you and help you identify best options.