Medical malpractice occurs when a health care professional acts away from the enforceable medical standards (by act or omission) causing in most cases physical and moral harm to the patient.
What are the most common Medical Malpractice Cases?
- Delay in diagnosis
- Error in diagnosis or interpretation.
- Surgical interventions
- Inadequate prescription of medications.
- No follow-up of protocols.
- Transmission by blood transfusion of diseases such as Hepatitis or AIDS.
- Failure to obtain the promised result in cosmetic surgery, voluntary, in liposuction, slimming processes, prosthetic placement, etc.
- Nosocomial infections.
- Damage is caused by the surgical material itself or by being forgotten inside the patient.
- Death due to failure to provide emergency healthcare.
- Lack of informed consent, and therefore of the prior information of the act to be carried out with its possible alternatives and consequences.
Failure to properly supervise the patient in the postoperative period.
What Do Medical Malpractice Cases involve?
Medical malpractice cases are generally filed by patients who have suffered due to the negligence of a healthcare professional. If one practice is accused of multiple medical malpractice cases, then all the affected people can file a medical malpractice lawsuit.
The plaintiff is the one who files the complaint and can be the patient, a lawfully appointed party acting on the patient’s behalf, or the executor or trustee of the patient’s assets if the patient dies. The party is accused of malpractice is known as the defendant. In medical malpractice cases, a doctor, a nurse, a psychiatrist, or a healthcare organization can be the defendant. In some cases, all of them can be collectively accused of malpractice, if a patient dies or suffer severe complications after a surgery or a treatment.
Essential Elements of a Medical Malpractice Lawsuit
In order to prevail in a medical malpractice lawsuit, the applicant must demonstrate the following four elements:
- The health care provider or hospital had an obligation that they didn’t fulfill
- The duty was violated when the health care provider or hospital could not adhere to the expected quality of care
- The violation resulted in an accident and it was directly related to the injury.
- The patient has suffered considerable be it physical, mental, or financial.
Medical malpractice lawsuits are common in the United States. The complainant or a legal counsel must first file a case before a court of law. Prior to the start of the proceedings, the prosecutor and defendant must exchange facts during discovery. This may include paper requests, depositions, and interrogatories.
If the parties reach an understanding, they will settle out of court. The case will not be tried in this instance. If they cannot reach an agreement, the matter will go to court. The complainant must show without a reasonable doubt that the defendant was reckless and full of neglect. In most trials, both the defendant and the complainant will present witnesses to clarify the proper level of treatment.
The judge would then weigh in all of the facts to determine which party has a solid case. To put it another way, the judge will decide who wins. If the appellant prevails, the court will rule on damages.
The losing party may request a retrial. In certain courts, where the complainant seeks a bigger settlement, they will file a motion for additur, which asks for an estimate of costs and a larger payout. If the defendant is unhappy with a substantial verdict, they will file a motion for remittitur, which asks the judge to limit the number of damages. The decision can be appealed to either side.
What Sort of Compensation Plaintiffs can get?
Compensation and punitive damages can be awarded to the plaintiff. Economic losses, such as reduced earning ability, life insurance costs, and hospital expenses, are examples of compensatory damages. Typically, all historical and future liabilities are calculated.
Non-economic damages, which measure the accident itself, psychological and physical harm, such as losing one’s eyes or legs, intense discomfort, and emotional trauma, can also be included in compensatory damages.
Punitive damages are only awarded if the defendant is alleged to have engaged in intentional or deliberate wrongdoing. Punitive damages are a form of penalty. That is additional coverage on the real losses.
Lawsuits are typically expensive, exhausting, and takes up a lot of time. Anyone considering filing a case should balance the benefits and drawbacks before proceeding. If the damage is minor, the patient can easily spend more money on the lawsuit than they may get in compensation.
At those times, you must bear in mind that any medical documentation may be of great importance in a subsequent claim, for that reason a copy of any medical document must be requested, even if it is an unimportant document in your opinion. When we find ourselves with injuries caused by negligence, it is also advisable to make a photographic follow-up of the evolution of the injury in question. As soon as possible, you should contact a medical malpractice lawyer specialized in this matter so that medical malpractice lawyers can guide and advise you according to the circumstances since sometimes these first moments are of the utmost importance for the success of the medical malpractice lawsuit.
At this point we find two large groups, firstly there are the medical errors made in public medical centers or by their health professionals (in Social Security), and on the other hand, we find the errors suffered in private medical centers or by professional private doctors. If negligence is committed in public health (Public hospitals, health centers, outpatient clinics): It is an administrative procedure where compensation is claimed before the administration causing the medical negligence for the damages caused by their wrongdoing.