Medical malpractice is a professional negligence by act or omission by a health care provider in which care provided is not the same as accepted standards of practice in the medical community and causes injury or death to the patient. Medical malpractice occurs more often than it should and has devastating results on the people involved. Medical professionals are required to have professional liability insurance to counter act this risk.
Medical malpractice can walk a fine line, and there are certain things that distinguish actual medical malpractice from the many things that can go wrong in the medical world. In order to have a sold malpractice lawsuit you will need to establish all four elements of the tort of negligence. The first element is there was a duty owed; this occurs whenever a hospital or doctor takes the role of caring and treating a patient. The second element is that the duty was breached; the provider failed to conform to the current standard of care. The standard of care can be proven either by an expert witness or by obvious errors. The third element is the breach resulted in injury or death to the patient. The fourth and final element is the damages caused, without damages or losses there is no reason for a claim, even if the medical provider was negligent.
The most common causes for a medical malpractice lawsuits are misdiagnoses or failure to diagnose, anesthesia errors, and surgical errors. Misdiagnoses or failure to diagnose are the most common types of medical malpractice lawsuits and occur because of failure to diagnose your illness. Anesthesia errors are very dangerous because they can cause brain damage and even death. Surgical errors are usually the easiest to spot and can result in permanent injury or death. There are several other kinds of malpractice lawsuits including birth injury, unsatisfied receivers of plastic surgery, giving the wrong prescription, and the list goes on to include anything that is of a negligent manner.
Filing a lawsuit requires that you also be sure to follow some guidelines. The most important thing to remember in medical malpractice lawsuits or any lawsuit is that you have a time limit. This time limit is called the statute of limitations, and it can be vary according to state. The most common statute of limitations is that the lawsuit has to be initiated within a two year limit from the date you first received the injury or the date that you discovered it. It also states that you must initiate the lawsuit within three years from the date of the matter you are filing suit about. Currently there is no cap of the awards you might receive, but there are several parties trying to change that. They hope by capping the amount you may be awarded it will ensure that only legitimate complaints are heard.
When filing a medical malpractice lawsuit it is important to be informed and to have evidentiary support of your complaint. An medical malpractice attorney is very important in these cases and you will need to obtain one.