Medical Malpractice

Medical malpractice occurs when a healthcare professional neglects to provide appropriate treatment, take appropriate action, or gives substandard treatment that causes harm, injury, or death to a person.

The malpractice or negligence normally involves a medical error. This could be in diagnosis, medication dosage, health management, treatment, or aftercare.

Medical malpractice law makes it possible for patients to recover compensation from any harms that result from sub-standard treatment.

What is Malpractice?

A hospital, doctor, or other health care professional is expected to provide a certain standard of care.

The professional is not liable for all the harms a patient experiences.

However, they are legally responsible if the patient experiences harm or injury because the health provider deviated from the quality of care that is normally expected in similar situations.

According to malpractice lawyers in the U.S., for medical malpractice to be considered, a number of factors must be involved.

These are:

Failure to provide a proper standard of care: The law requires that health care professionals adhere to certain standards, or potentially face an accusation of negligence.

An injury results from negligence: If a patient feels the provider was negligent, but no harm or injury occurs, there can be no claim. The patient must prove that negligence caused injury or harm, and that, without the negligence, it would not have happened.

The injury must have damaging consequences: The patient must show that the injury or harm caused by the medical negligence resulted in considerable damage.

Considerable damage could be:

  • suffering
  • enduring hardship
  • constant pain
  • considerable loss of income
  • disability

Types of error and malpractice

Examples of cases where an error or negligence could lead to a lawsuit include:

  • misdiagnosis or failure to diagnose
  • unnecessary or incorrect surgery
  • premature discharge
  • failure to order appropriate tests or to act on results
  • not following up
  • prescribing the wrong dosage or the wrong medication
  • leaving things inside the patient’s body after surgery
  • operating on the wrong part of the body
  • the patient has persistent pain after surgery
  • potentially fatal infections acquired in the hospital
  • pressure ulcers, or bedsores

Informed consent

If the patient does not give informed consent to a medical procedure, the doctor or health care provider may be liable if the procedure results in harm or injury, even if it was carried out perfectly.

If a surgeon does not inform the patient that a procedure involves a 30-percent risk of losing a limb, and the patient loses a limb, the doctor will be liable, even if the operation was done perfectly. This is because the patient may have opted not to go ahead if they had been informed of the risks.

Essential elements for a case

The plaintiff has to prove that four elements existed in order to succeed in a medical malpractice claim:

  • A duty was owed by the health care provider or hospital
  • A duty was breached, because the health care provider or hospital did not conform to the expected standard of care
  • The breach resulted in an injury, and it was closely linked to the injury
  • Considerable damage resulted for the patient, whether physical, emotional, or financial

If you have been a victim of a medical error and want to know your options or how to take action on a case, please contact RPatel Law for further guidance.

Get in touch to know more about our services

Scroll to Top

Contact Info

Sign Up to get my free video guide about the best way to lose stubborn belly fat