Medical malpractice takes place when a healthcare provider provides treatment that falls below the accepted standard of care in the medical community, putting the patient at risk of injury and death. In general, if a healthcare provider fails to act where others with similar training would have, the medical professional may be liable for any resulting injuries and other losses. In that instance, you might have a medical malpractice case.
Doctors and other medical professionals have a legal obligation to their patients.
- Breach of duty: For medical practitioners to be considered negligent, they must have violated the “duty of care” they owed their patients. For the duty of care to have been broken, the doctor must have failed to act how another medical practitioner would have acted in a similar situation.
- Causation: In addition to negligence, patients must also prove causation to have a valid claim. Injured patients must prove that the medical practitioner’s breach of duty was the cause of their injury. Through medical records, other documents and expert witness testimony, patients must be able to show a causal relationship between the doctor’s negligence and their injury.
- Damages: The injury caused by the healthcare provider’s negligence must have caused either economic or non-economic damages. This means that medical professionals cannot be held liable unless the injured patient incurred additional medical bills, lost wages or damage to their future earning capacity, or pain and suffering. You can file a medical malpractice lawsuit if your provider is negligent and injures you or a loved one.