Medical malpractice is the legal term for when a doctor or another medical professional makes a serious and inexcusable error while providing medical services. Essentially, if your doctor is negligent and his/her actions caused you to suffer an injury, you probably have a legal claim for medical malpractice against him/her.
How does malpractice occur?
All doctors must meet certain standards of care. This means that they must follow typical guidelines and procedures while providing patient care. They must abide by generally acknowledged practices. In other words, a doctor must behave in a way that most other doctors would, given a specific situation. If a doctor fails to meet his/her field’s required standard of care, s/he may be liable for medical malpractice.
Medical accidents caused by negligence can happen for a variety of reasons. For example, a hospital may be understaffed or a doctor may be suffering from overwork. In some cases, the doctor may have developed bad habits or received improper training. No matter the root cause, if you suffered as a result of a doctor’s negligent actions, you deserve compensation.
Here are a few examples of doctor negligence that could result in medical malpractice claims:
Delayed Diagnosis: If your doctor fails to see what would have been obvious to most doctors and your condition worsens, you have a claim for medical malpractice. For example, consider a woman who visits her doctor complaining about a lump on her breast. Although the doctor said it was nothing, the lump was actually cancerous. Although the doctor could have begun treatment at that time, the woman ignores it on her doctor’s advice.
Misdiagnosis: If your doctor diagnoses your condition as something else and causes you further injury, you may have a valid claim. For example, chest pain has many causes. If your doctor says you are suffering from heartburn when you are really having a heart attack, you may have a malpractice claim.
Prescribing Incorrect Medication: If your doctor prescribes you the wrong type of medication or the wrong dosage, and you suffer an injury as a result, you have a claim for medical malpractice. For example, it would be malpractice for a hospital to give an infant an adult dosage of medication, since this would likely harm the child.
Leaving Behind a Foreign Object After Surgery: One of the textbook examples of medical malpractice is leaving a foreign object, such as a scalpel or surgical towel, inside of a person after surgery. Such mistakes can happen if a surgeon fails to account for all of his/her tools before sewing a person up at the end of surgery.
Note: You only have a case if you suffered injury due to the malpractice. If your doctor gives you the wrong prescription and nothing happens, you do not have a case.
How can I get help with my malpractice case?
If you or a loved one suffered injury at the hands of a negligent medical provider, contact the Montero Law Center. We will review your case and determine who is liable for your injuries. Call us today at 954-767-6500 to set up a free initial consultation at our Fort Lauderdale office.