Medical Clinic Malpractice

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 Can I Sue a Medical Clinic for Medical Malpractice?

A medical clinic is a medical facility that focuses mostly on providing outpatient care. A person may be injured as a result of the care they receive at a medical clinic. If so, they may well be able to bring a medical malpractice claim against the clinic and/or the clinic staff members who provide treatment.

Medical malpractice claims generally involve the patient proving negligence on the part of healthcare providers or sometimes administrators, which causes injury or death to a person.

The following are some of the most common examples of medical malpractice injuries that occur in both clinics, traditional hospitals, and other types of medical facilities, e.g., surgery centers:

  • Failure to diagnose and properly treat medical emergencies;
  • Failure to diagnose and properly treat serious medical conditions, e.g., cancer;
  • Mistakes made during surgery;
  • Mistakes associated with prescriptions for medication and/or treatment;
  • Delays in diagnosis;
  • Birth Injuries;
  • Lack of informed consent;
  • Abandonment.

As with any other personal injury case, the victim who is suing a medical clinic for malpractice involving care they received in a clinic must prove all of the following elements of negligence:

  • Duty: Once again, doctors are required to adhere to a specific standard of care. In legal terms, this is defined as the degree of care that a reasonably competent and prudent physician, who is in good standing and of the same or similar educational background and geographic location as another physician, should exercise under the circumstances. The victim must prove that the physician in question owed them a duty of care;
  • Breach: An injured patient must also prove that the doctor breached their duty of care. Usually, this requires the testimony of a medical expert who can testify about the standard of care that was owed by the healthcare provider in the case. The expert can then testify as to how the care provided fell below the standard that should apply in the case.
    • Another doctor who practices in the same or a similar community may well provide the necessary expert opinions.
  • Causation: Causation in a personal injury lawsuit simply means that the victim must prove that the doctor’s breach of their duty caused them injury. In short, the court will generally ask, “but for the doctor’s actions, would the victim in this case have been injured?” If the answer is “no,” then the victim has been successful in proving causation; and
  • Damages: The victim must prove that they suffered physical and emotional harm that can be quantified and compensated by an award of money damages because their healthcare provider breached their duty of care to the patient.

There is one exception. According to the Federal Tort Claims Act, medical professionals who work at charitable free clinics are considered to be federal employees in terms of civil liability.

This status gives them immunity from medical malpractice liability if they meet specific requirements. It is assumed that this law was passed in order to encourage more medical professionals to offer their services for free by making it less risky to do so. It is important to note that this law does not apply to clinics that charge for their medical services, even if the fee is considerably reduced when compared to others.

What Is Malpractice in a Medical Clinic?

Medical malpractice in a medical clinic is the same as medical malpractice in any other context in which medical care is provided. It occurs when a doctor, some other medical professional, and/or healthcare organization provides care that falls below the standard of care required of them when doing any of the following:

  • Managing;
  • Diagnosing;
  • Treating a patient, which then results in an injury to that patient.

This deviation from the standard duty of care that is required of all medical professionals is generally associated with an act of negligence.

Medical malpractice law is what allows an injured patient to bring a claim against a negligent medical professional, as well as recover damages for the harms that were caused by their substandard conduct.

Whether a medical professional can be held liable for a patient’s injuries will depend on the facts of a specific case. It will also depend on the differing rules and requirements of medical malpractice laws in each specific state.

What Are Examples of Medical Malpractice Injuries?

As noted above, among the most common examples of medical malpractice injuries involve the incorrect diagnosis, delay or failure to diagnose a patient’s medical condition, and errors in treatment.

A person may die as a result of the malpractice in a medical clinic. If so, their close family members would consult a personal injury lawyer about the possibility of filing a lawsuit for wrongful death.

What Are the Remedies for Medical Malpractice?

The remedies for medical malpractice generally take the following form:

  • Economic Damages: Economic damages compensate the victim for the economic losses they suffered as a result of their injury. That would be all necessary medical treatment they needed, lost wages, and loss of earning capacity if that is an issue in the case;
  • Non-Economic Damages: These are damages that are challenging to quantify as they are intangible injuries. This most commonly includes pain and suffering, emotional distress, and loss of enjoyment of activities;
  • Punitive Damages: These are rarely ever awarded and are generally only recognized for medical malpractice claims in a handful of states. In states in which they can be awarded, there are generally damage caps or limits on the amounts as well. Punitive damages are intended to punish the defendant in an effort to discourage others from recklessness.

Some other examples of remedies that a victim may pursue include having a medical professional’s license suspended or revoked or requiring that a medical facility update its policies and/or health and safety procedures in order to reduce the likelihood of future occurrences.

What Should I Do if I Want to Sue a Medical Clinic for Malpractice?

One important thing to keep in mind is the fact that there is a statute of limitations in every state for filing a medical malpractice lawsuit. This is a time limit on a person’s ability to file a lawsuit. In most states, the medical malpractice statute of limitations is 2 years from the date of discovery of the malpractice, but it is different in some states.

For example, in California, the statute of limitations is 1 year after the discovery of the malpractice, 3 years after the injury occurred.

It is important not to delay investigation of your case and filing a lawsuit if that is indicated by the fact.

The fact is that consulting a personal injury lawyer can be helpful to a person who suspects they have been the victim of medical malpractice. A lawyer can investigate the case and collect relevant documents, e.g., the records of the medical clinic that treated the person. The lawyer can submit the case to a medical expert to get their opinion as to whether there was malpractice and, if so, how the healthcare provider’s treatment fell below the standard of care.

Getting the opinion of an expert early on can be important because more and more states now require victims to obtain a “certificate of merit” before starting a medical malpractice action. This requires a review of the case by a medical expert who certifies that the original healthcare provider’s care fell below accepted medical standards, and this resulted in the victim’s injuries.

The attorney can provide an expert, arrange for their review of a person’s case, and file the certificate of merit.

Do I Need the Help of a Lawyer for My Medical Clinic Medical Malpractice Issue?

If you have been injured due to medical malpractice, you want to consult with a local personal injury lawyer as soon as possible. can connect you to an attorney who will be most aware of your specific state’s laws and how those laws may affect your legal rights and options. Additionally, an attorney will also be able to represent you in court as needed.


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