To put it simply, medical malpractice is negligence on the part of a doctor or medical professional that occurs during the course of treating a patient. A medical malpractice case is a personal injury lawsuit brought by an injured patient to recover compensation for damages that they have sustained as a result of being treated by a doctor or medical professional.
If you have been treated by a medical professional and are worse off because of it, you may have grounds for a medical malpractice case. However, there are 4 things that must be proven in order for you to win a medical malpractice case.
1. Standard of Care
Doctors are human. They are not expected to be perfect. But they are expected to be reasonably competent. In other words, they have to meet the standard expected of a reasonably competent doctor. Therefore, you and your lawyer will need to find a medical expert who is willing to testify to what the reasonable standards of care is for the type of medical care you received.
2. Breach of Standard of Care
The second thing you will be required to prove is that the doctor breached the above-mentioned standard of care. In other words, that the doctor did something that a reasonably competent doctor would not have done? Or, that the doctor fail to do something that a reasonably competent doctor would have done? The standard of care and breach of the standard of care, taken together, proves negligence on the part of the doctor, but this still isn’t enough to win a medical malpractice case.
The third thing you have to prove to win a medical malpractice case is causation. This means proving that the doctor’s breach of the standard of care actually caused the injuries you have suffered. In some cases, the doctor may have actually breached the standard of care, but that breach may not have caused your injury.
For example, everyone knows that doctors are supposed to wear latex gloves when they operate. Not wearing those gloves is clearly a breach of the standard of care. Still, it would be very difficult to establish a clear link between the doctor not wearing those gloves and he or she mistakenly operating on the wrong leg. On the other hand, if you develop an infection after the operation, the failure on the part of the doctor to wear those gloves certainly may have caused your infection because the gloves are meant to prevent such infections.
The final thing you need to prove is damages. This means proving the nature and severity of your injuries, how they prevent you from earning a living, and what medical costs are associated with treating your injuries. In other words, you need to prove all of the financial costs of being injured as a result of the doctor’s breach of the standard of care.
Contact An Experienced Medical Malpractice Attorney
Medical malpractice cases are complex and usually require detailed investigation, expert testimony and the assistance of a skilled medical malpractice attorney. For help in locating a qualified medical malpractice attorney in your area give The Hayes Firm a call today at 1-800-603-6833 or contact us here to arrange a free consultation.