According to research more than $3 billion are spent on medical malpractice lawsuits settlement yearly. This is the number of successful victims, however, a large number fails to prove the negligence or teach an agreement.
Let’s discuss what medical negligence is and how the negligence can be converted into medical malpractice.
“Medical negligence is when a medical practitioner fails to provide care which matches the standard set by the medical board. Injury or the ultimate death of the patient can occur because of this negligence.”
So the question remains that how will you determine if a person has been a victim of medical negligence, moreover, how that negligence will be determined in a medical malpractice claim? Let’s discuss this in detail
How Negligence Can Turn In To Medical Malpractice:
- Substandard Service:
This occurs when a health care professional fails to maintain his/her level of service to the standard which has been set by the law.
- Negligence Which Results In Injury:
In this case, the patient feels that the health care provider has shown negligence in providing the service, however, the claim cannot be made on this account if the negligence has not resulted in any injury.
- Temporary Or Permanent Damages Because Of That Injury:
In this case, the patient must prove that the negligence has caused damage in the form of temporary or permanent repercussions. The damages can be,
Requirements of Malpractice Cases:
The abovementioned cases are those in which negligence can be determined as malpractice in a lawsuit. Now let’s discuss the special requirements necessary in such cases. However, different states have different rules as medical malpractice law comes under state, not under the federal system.
- Statute Of Limitation:
In most of the states, the limitation exits between the tenure of 6 months to 2 years. This means that after the end of this statute of limitations, you cannot file a lawsuit. There is also another thing to remember when dealing with a medical malpractice lawsuit.
In some states, the statute of limitation clock starts ticking when the patient discovers the injury and in some states when the actual act of negligence occurs. So it is important to find out the rule of your state before filing a lawsuit.
- Testimony Of An Expert:
In usual cases, the testimony of an expert is required in a medical malpractice case. The expert has to be from the same field that the lawsuit case is from. There are very few cases in which the testimony of an expert is not required.
Such cases are those in which the proof of negligence and medical malpractice are blatantly evident, For example, leaving foreign objects inside the patient after the operation, etc.
- Special Panel:
In some states, special medical panels are required to review cases before the patient can file a lawsuit in court. The case will be reviewed by the panel of experts; they will review the evidence, hear arguments on both sides and give their two cents on the case. Even though the panel review does not have an official impact malpractice lawsuit but still the judges highly consider their opinion on malpractice when taking a decision.
- Limited Compensation:
It is hard to demand an appropriate amount of compensation because proving malpractice is categorically difficult. There are a significant number of lawsuits are filed every year from which only a small amount of them wins.
There are a lot of things to be considered when calculating the damage such as,
i. Special damages:
These damages can be calculated exactly because they are the loses incurred due to the loss of earning capacity or financial loses. There are a lot of things that come under it, for example
- Lost of employment benefits
- Health insurance
- Pension benefits
- Vacation time
- Present or future medical bills incurred due to the malpractice
ii. General damages:
These are qualitative damages that are difficult to calculate in a monetary term such as the pain and suffering of the victim. Under general damages comes,
- Physical pain
- Mental pain
iii. Lost earnings:
For this, the victim has to hire an economic expert to give an explanation about the change of earning before and after the incident. Also how the malpractice has affected the earning capacity negatively.
Moreover, some states have laws that limit the monetary compensation to a certain extent.
The medical malpractice laws are highly complex and having a good lawyer is very important in these cases. If you are a victim of malpractice then do visit Grand Junction Medical Malpractice Lawyer.