When you are discharged from a hospital too early, and injuries result, you may be qualified to file a medical malpractice lawsuit against the hospital and/or the doctors who discharged you.
Hospitals may discharge you early because they are lacking in resources. For example, they need the bed space, they are losing money from providing you a bed, or they are lacking in staff.
On the other hand, when you are discharged too soon, you are not receiving all the medical care you need and your doctor may fail to catch any upcoming conditions. Thus, your condition may worsen and your condition will not be stabilized.
What Is Medical Malpractice?
Medical malpractice is a lawsuit that occurs where an employee of a medical institution does something wrong or negligently and causes injuries to a patient. It could be the action or inaction of doing something.
The standard of care is based on a local standard for general practitioners and a national standard for specialists. Essentially, at a minimum, a hospital and/or doctor will be liable for medical malpractice if their standard of care for you is lower than that what a reasonable doctor would have done in the area.
How Do I Prove My Claim?
Like all other medical malpractice cases, you would need to obtain an expert witness to state that the hospital or its staff did not meet the standard of care, and as a result, caused or worsen your injuries. Additionally, you will need to testify about your treatment and your condition.
There are some defenses that malpractice cases can use.
- Statute of Limitations: All malpractice cases are subject to statute of limitations laws, meaning there is a specific amount of time in which you are allowed to file a claim. In some states this period of time is about 7 years. This varies, so it is important to ask your lawyer if you are within the legal time period in which to file a claim.
- Failure to Show Causation: Medical malpractice is notoriously difficult to prove because of how difficult it is to prove causation. For almost any treatment, condition, symptom, or surgery result, there are usually a number of other potential reasons for why the injury could have occurred. A defense against medical malpractice is arguing that it could have been the fault of a number of other factors other than the doctor.
- Contributory Negligence: If a judge or jury determines that the plaintiff is partially at fault for the damage that occurred, the awarded damages will be reduced.
- Respectable Minority Principle: Malpractice claims against doctors are often judged by the reasonable standard of care in the profession. That means that they are more or less expected to perform to the industry standard and not deviate from it. However, occasionally there is need to deviate from the standard, or at least good reason to. This is called the respectable minority principle. If the medical professional can prove there was a good reason to discharge a person early, even if it deviates from industry standard, this may be a successful defense.
How Much Damages Will I Get?
In order to obtain damages, you would need to establish your right to them. In medical malpractice cases, most plaintiffs are able to obtain:
Consulting a Medical Malpractice Lawyer
If you believe you were discharged from the hospital too soon, please consult a personal injury lawyer as soon as possible. The lawyer will help you file your claim against the necessary parties and he will help you prove your case.