A medical malpractice claim normally involves an individual who has been injured through the improper action or inaction of a health care professional.
This can include a physician misdiagnosing the patient, incorrectly reading the patient’s charts or test results, providing the patient with improper medications and other scenarios similar to these. If a physician or other health care professional violates the normal standard of care expected from patients or deviates from the normal standard of care in relation to the individual’s injuries and causes death or injury to an individual, that individual could receive financial compensation through a medical malpractice claim.
In order for an individual to prove negligence or wrongdoing in a medical malpractice claim, four elements need to be addressed. These are known as the four burdens of proof for a medical malpractice claim and these include:
Duty of care.
As a patient, you have the legal right to expect that a licensed healthcare professional will treat you with the medical knowledge and skills required of a reasonably competent medical practitioner and exercise adequate care in the application of that knowledge and those skills. In addition, a hospital, doctor, or other health care provider should use medical judgment in the exercise of the care required by his/her patient and this duty of care applies to all physicians in all specialties.
Breach of duty.
In order to prove breach of duty, you must be able to prove, using expert witnesses and medical literature, that a health care practitioner did not act reasonably in treating you. You must show what a reasonably competent health care professional would have done in a similar situation, in comparison to the treatment you received.
Injuries & damages.
As a result of your injuries, you may receive various forms of compensation if you can prove medical malpractice or medical negligence. These damages include:
- Medical Expenses (Past and Future)
- Pain and Suffering (Physical and Emotional/Past and Future)
- Loss of Benefits (Parent, Spouse, Child)
- Impairment or Loss of Ability to Labor and Earn Money
- Lost Income/Wages
This element is set to determine whether the injuries caused were, in any way, a consequence of the breach of duty by the health care professional. In order to prove this element, you must find causation in fact, which includes finding a substantial factor in the cause of the harm and the absence of a public policy rule of law, prohibiting the imposition of liability.
If you have questions about your specific situation, our experienced medical malpractice law firm can help you. With more than 20 years of representing medical malpractice victims, our lawyers know how to get you the settlement you deserve. Contact us today for a free, no obligation case review.