Not few are the cases in which doctors do not perform their duties properly and lead to the injury or even death of the patients they have in care. The medical error can and should be brought to the attention of the of the competent authorities and the injured patient has the legal right to claim damages if he and his personal injury lawyer are able to prove in court the act of omission and the non-respect of medical standards. There a few requirements of tort lawsuit to consider prior to taking legal action and in addition to this, regulations vary from jurisdiction to jurisdiction.
A case of medical malpractice occurs during the improper treatment of the patient; for example, if the doctor misdiagnoses the patient or if the imposed standard of care has not been entirely respected. The suit can be brought against the doctor, the hospital or the nurse, practically any care professional that has not performed his/her duties in compliance with health care system requirements. A personal injury refers to any kind of physical lesion. The patient is considered to have suffered a personal injury either in the case that the doctor has administered medication in an amateurish way or if he has not fully informed the patients on the risks and complications of a surgery. However, attention must be paid to the fact that lawyers are very selective with the cases that they accept and the patient has to realize that medical malpractice is a hard case to argue in court. Nonetheless, the patient is entitled to hold the medical care provider responsible for the respective injury.
Necessary conditions to formulate a claim
In the first place, the claim for damages is based the existence of a doctor-patient relationship, in other words that the doctor was hired by the patient and if the doctor personally oversaw the patient’s treatment plan. Liability does not apply to informal advice given in a discussion. Secondly, the patient can sue the doctor only if the medical physician has caused great suffering to the patient by mishandling the diagnosis and the treatment. Examples of this include a surgery that has led to complications due to the forgetting of a medical instrument during the procedure. If the patient is simply unsatisfied with minor details, then he has no right to accuse the doctor of a breach of duty. In addition to this, it is stipulated that the medical physician has to conduct himself reasonably skillful and careful, meaning that patients should not expect miracles.
The issue of damages
The ultimate goal for the plaintiff, with the aid of his attorney, is to demonstrate that the negligence in care has caused damage to the well-being of the patient. Damages can present themselves in the form of medical bills and other additional costs that the patient was forced to pay as a result of the treatment of the suffered lesion. In other cases, an operation gone bad can cost a person his ability to work and thus to support himself; for example, the amputation of a leg. In addition to this, factors such as physical and emotional distress carry a heavy weight too. During the tort trial, the expert witness will give a personal opinion on the case. In short, if the plaintiff is victorious he can get both compensatory and punitive damages in the form of financial or non-financial compensation.
In conclusion, no one should be afraid to start a lawsuit if he has been wrongfully injured and plaintiffs must keep in mind the fact that many medical institutions often make as settlement deal out of court in order to avoid media exposure.