Medical Malpractice Lawyers
Locate a Local Personal Injury Lawyer
What Is Medical Malpractice?
Medical malpractice is a type of personal injury that occurs when a doctor or other medical professional fails to competently perform his or her duties based upon a professional standard of care, resulting in harm to a patient. It includes making mistakes while treating a patient as well as failing to take proper medical action.
Examples of Medical Malpractice Claims
- Failure to diagnose
- Improper treatment
- Delay in treatment
- Improper surgery
- Loss of chance
- Prescription errors
- Anesthesia errors
- Prescribing experimental drugs
- Failure to properly explain a medical procedure or potential side effects
Possible Defendants in Medical Malpractice Cases
In addition to brining a lawsuit against doctors and nurses, malpractice claims can also be brought against facilities or professionals including:
Standard of Care in Medical Malpractice Cases
Medical professionals are required to exercise the skill and knowledge normally exercised by medical professionals in good standing and in similar communities. Basically, the customs within the medical profession set the standard of care for medical malpractice cases.
Types of Recovery
Recovery in medical malpractice suits is typically divided into economic and non-economic damages:
- Economic damages reimburse the plaintiff for actual monetary losses suffered. Also called specific or special damages, this amount is easily quantifiable and includes the cost of medical bills, lost wages, and diminished future earnings.
- Non-economic damages represent compensation for the injury itself and are more difficult to quantify. Also called general damages, this form of recovery requires the jury to assign a monetary value to the injury itself, pain and suffering, and any resulting disability or disfigurement.
State Limits on Medical Malpractice Recovery
While economic damages are almost always recoverable, many states impose limits on non-economic damages in medical malpractice cases. These states argue that arbitrarily high damages awards drive up insurance premiums and discourage medical practice.
Other states have gone the opposite route and have actually forbidden caps on non-economic damages. These states argue that legislatively imposed caps on recovery are arbitrary and violate the constitutional right to a trial by jury, and that damages should be assessed by juries on a case-by-case basis.
Do You Need an Attorney?
If you or a loved one have been injured by medical malpractice, you should speak to an attorney immediately to learn more about the value of your case and what types of recoveries are available to you.
Consult a Lawyer - Present Your Case Now!
Last Modified: 05-12-2015 05:53 PM PDT
Did you find this article informative?
Link to this page