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Malpractice is a general term for any acts of omissions, negligence, or frivolousness by professionals. These acts work to the detriment of their client or patients in medical malpractice.
So what is considered malpractice?
There are many forms of malpractice, but the most prominent is medical and legal malpractice. Some people use professional negligence interchangeably with malpractice. Both terms mean the same thing.
Medical malpractice is more devastating than other forms of malpractice. That’s because medical malpractice can, in severe cases, lead to death. In fact, 225,000 people die every year because of medical malpractice.
It’s even more unfortunate that only 2% of victims of medical malpractice ever file for compensation. What’s more, only a few of the patients who file for compensation get compensation.
Unsurprisingly, there are legal consequences for medical malpractices. That’s why it’s so important to understand what amounts to medical malpractices and its legal implications.
Read on to learn more about medical and legal malpractice and what it means for the medic, lawyer, and their respective patients/clients.
What Is Considered Malpractice?
Medical malpractice is when medics don’t observe the procedural standards of healthcare. They thus through negligence, omission, or some cases of misdiagnosis cause the injury to the patient or worsen their condition.
However, note that not all cases of misdiagnoses are considered medical malpractice. That’s because even the most experienced doctors make diagnostic errors sometimes. For a misdiagnosis to be medical malpractice, it should lead to wrong treatment, delayed treatment, or no treatment at all.
Malpractice may have legal implications under specified criteria. For the court to consider any case as malpractice, it should fit one of these criteria.
Negligence That Led To Injury
The patient in question must sufficiently prove that the injury they sustained was a result of callousness by the medic. The patient does so by proving that the injury wouldn’t have occurred if the medic was more careful. Injury without negligence or callousness doesn’t count as medical malpractice.
Violates the Standard of Care
Think of standard of care as what would be universally accepted by medical practitioners as prudent and reasonable healthcare standards. If medical practitioners don’t conform to these standards during treatment, then it’s considered malpractice. If a patient can conclusively establish that the medic violated the standard of care, then the medic is held liable.
The Injury or Condition Caused Massive Damages
A case of malpractice is only viable if the patients’ injury or condition led to expensive damages. That’s because the malpractice litigation process is lengthy and very expensive.
It makes no sense to spend so much time and money on less severe cases. To that effect, the patient must prove significant damages accrued from the injury or condition from malpractice.
The court may consider your case if the malpractice caused:-
- Unusual excruciating pain
- Loss of employment or source of income
- Physical impairment
- Huge current or future medical bills
Medical malpractice is a general term for a cluster of acts during a patient’s diagnosis or treatment. Most, if not all, cases of malpractice revolve around negligence.
Instances That May Qualify As Medical Malpractice
- Misdiagnoses or failure to diagnose– As stated earlier, not all misdiagnosis cases are malpractice. The misdiagnosis must lead to delayed or lack of treatment and improper healthcare to be malpractice.
- Ignoring or misinterpreting lab results, which often leads to misdiagnosis with heavy repercussions.
- Failure to recognize symptoms– This is a hallmark of medical incompetence or just an act of negligence.
- Discharging patients too early– Sometimes, a premature discharge may be detrimental to your patients’ health. If the condition worsens or the patient succumbs, then it’s medical malpractice.
- Unnecessary surgery– Performing surgery on a patient without the need for surgery is malpractice. Conducting surgery on the wrong part is also medical malpractice.
- Giving wrong medication and dosages
- Ignoring patients’ medical histories during treatment and diagnosis. Patients’ medical histories are essential for diagnosis and prescribing medication. For instance, it helps doctors from not prescribing a drug that the patient is allergic to.
If you’re a victim of medical malpractice, then your next move is to seek legal resolution. Talk to a lawyer certified by the APBLA for your medical malpractice claim. The right attorney will help you file a claim for medical malpractice, so you get proper compensation for your case.
Factors You Should Consider Before a Malpractice Lawsuit
Not every mistake the doctor or nurse makes counts as medical malpractice. Also, don’t confuse medical malpractice for less than stellar medical services. Malpractice can, in severe cases, lead to death, while you can carry on just okay with the other one.
So before you initiate a malpractice proceeding, here’s what you should keep in mind:-
- Do you have enough evidence– Your case is pointless if you don’t have sufficient evidence against your doctor. Evidence could include medical records, prescriptions, and lab tests. A medical panel will review your evidence if it’s adequate for a favorable ruling
- Did the medic fail in duty– Misdiagnosis or operating on the wrong place are instances where doctors fail in duty. You must present a sufficient case of the doctor’s failure to perform his obligatory duties correctly.
- Do you have the right malpractice attorney– Going into a medical malpractice hearing with the wrong attorney is a waste of time. That’s why it’s essential to get the best people for the job when it comes to malpractice hearings. Firms like Cumming Laws, for instance, have an incredible track record with malpractice hearings.
You Have a Right to Proper Medical Care and Legal Aid
Hopefully, you now have a firm idea of what is considered malpractices. If you’re a victim of malpractice, remember you can seek justice through legal means. However, before you do so, ensure you have your facts right.
Lastly, a proper attorney is crucial for getting your compensation for your malpractice claims. So do your scouting and get the right attorney for the job.
For more insightful reads, remember to check out other pieces on the site.