When you visit your doctor, you expect the best possible care, right?
While doctors get held to a high standard, mistakes can and do occur often. Doctors are not infallible, so they can’t always be perfect. Despite that, a medical mistake can be fatal.
What are the different types of medical malpractice? What are your legal options after such an incident? Keep reading to get all the details.
What Is Medical Negligence and Malpractice?
Medical malpractice happens when a patient gets injured by a doctor’s negligence. Negligence means the doctor failed to act with or provide reasonable care.
Here are the basic elements of medical malpractice:
- A relationship existed between the patient and the doctor
- The doctor failed to act with reasonable care
- This negligence caused an injury to the patient
- The injury led to damages
It’s challenging to distinguish between medical negligence and a reasonable error. How do courtrooms make a determination? Often, medical experts testify on behalf of the victim.
Malpractice examples usually mean the doctor’s care fell below the standard of care. It means another doctor would have taken a different course of action.
Common Types of Medical Malpractice
Can you imagine attempting to diagnose a wide range of health conditions daily? This is the reality for thousands of doctors.
Mistakes happen on a regular basis. Here are some of the most common examples of medical malpractice:
- Delayed diagnosis
- Failure to diagnose
- Medication errors
- Unnecessary or wrong-site surgery
- Improper aftercare
- Failure to order the proper tests
- Failure to consider a person’s medical history
- Failure to warn patients about the risks of treatment
Medical errors are currently the third-leading cause of death in America. Victims who survive continue to suffer from physical pain and financial loss. What are a victim’s options?
Criminal and Civil Remedies
Victims injured by malpractice may have both criminal and civil legal options. You can pursue criminal charges to punish the perpetrator, or seek a civil lawsuit.
Medical malpractice is sometimes considered a crime. Criminal sanctions are usually reserved for incidents that involve one of the following elements:
- Extreme recklessness
- A clear intention to hurt the victim
- “Never” events like wrong-site amputation
- Intentionally performing unnecessary procedures for financial gain (health care fraud)
- Death or disability caused by gross negligence
Medical malpractice suits seek financial compensation from the responsible healthcare provider. Compensation in these malpractice suits pays for medical bills and pain and suffering.
Are you considering filing a medical negligence claim? Reaching out to a Vanderbilt medical malpractice lawyer is your best option. An attorney will help you access the medical witnesses, evidence, and legal tools you need.
Recovering From Medical Malpractice
These types of medical malpractice all have serious consequences on a patient’s life. Physical harm may be irreparable, but there are legal remedies available to you.
Have you or a loved one ever suffered from medical malpractice? Were you able to seek out criminal or civil justice? Share your stories with us by leaving a comment in the box below.