October 30, 2014
No one expects to receive medical care that results in serious injury or even death—but each year in the United States alone, over 15,000 medical malpractice claims are filed. You can protect yourself and your loved ones by knowing the common medical malpractice errors, the elements of a medical malpractice claim and whether or not you are entitled to damages from an incident of medical malpractice.
Medical Malpractice Simplified
Medical malpractice refers to negligent treatment by a doctor, healthcare provider, or other medical professional that results in the injury, harm, or death of a patient seeking medical care. Medical malpractice cases can be difficult because there are numerous elements that each case must meet.
The 4 Elements of a Medical Malpractice Claim
In order to file a personal injury claim for medical malpractice, the case must meet four elements, which are:
- Duty. Duty essentially means you must be able to prove there was a relationship between the patient and doctor or other medical professional that provided a service.
- Breach. Doctors and medical professionals have a duty to provide care to their patients that meets an accepted standard. To prove there was a breach of duty, you must be able to show that other doctors in the same field would have made a different diagnosis or handled the patient’s care differently assuming they were in the same position.
- Causation. In order for the causation element in a medical malpractice case to be met, the aforementioned breach must cause something bad to happen that could garner legally compensable damages.
- Injury or Damages. In order to have a medical malpractice claim, you must be able to prove that because of the breach of duty, you or a loved one sustained injuries.
Common Errors that Lead to Medical Malpractice
- Medication Errors. Nearly 1.5 million people are affected by medication errors annually in the United States. Medication errors can change from the initial prescribing of the medication to the actual administering of the drug.
- Anesthesia Errors. Anesthesiologists have an extremely important job during surgery or any other procedure that requires a patient to be under the effects of anesthesia. Anesthesia errors can result in a myriad of injuries including brain damage and even death.
- Childbirth Injuries. There are numerous injuries that can occur both before and during childbirth. Injuries before childbirth include failure to identify various birth defects and other diseases while injuries sustained during childbirth often include brain injuries, fractures, and nerve damage.
- Surgical Complications. Surgical complications happen all too frequently, and when they do, they could lead to a medical malpractice claim. Surgical complications arise when doctors are not familiar with their patient’s medical history before commencing surgery. Additionally, surgical errors, such as injuring an adjacent organ during surgery, can result in complications as well.
Medical malpractice cases are complex and require the advice and representation of a qualified legal professional. The experienced team at the Khonsari Law Group is skilled in handling various medical malpractice and personal injury cases. If you are seeking representation, contact KLG today and be sure to read more about medical malpractice here.