The Importance of Medical Negligence Lawyers
When you need medical attention, your first thought is probably to go see the doctor. Most of us associate doctors with being safe. Even if they can’t necessarily cure what ails us, we trust that they’ll do their best to make us feel better. Nonetheless, there’s a reason there are so many medical negligence lawyers out there. It’s because sometimes, doctors make mistakes and, when they do, it can injure their patients, who then have cause to file a lawsuit.
What Is Medical Malpractice?
Let’s start with a basic definition, so you’ll have a better understanding of when medical negligence lawyers are necessary. As we mentioned above, malpractice suits are in reaction to a doctor making a mistake. However, it can be any medical professional, meaning the nurse or a technician who was working with you.
That mistake also has to harm or injure you. If the technician took a bad x-ray, that’s a mistake, but it most likely didn’t leave you any worse off.
It’s also important to know that the mistake doesn’t have to be an action. The medical professional’s lack of action could have harmed you. Plenty of medical negligence lawyers are contacted because a doctor didn’t diagnose someone who was suffering or decided not to prescribe them the right medicine.
Standard of Care
If this sounds a bit vague, you’re not alone in thinking that. Medical negligence lawyers deal with tons of cases where it can be difficult to figure out whether or not the plaintiff even has a valid complaint.
To help with this, the law has a measure that’s used to decide whether or not a medical malpractice incident occurred. It’s known as the standard of care. This refers to whichever methods are generally accepted by other medical professionals in the area.
Even this needs a bit of an explanation though. If you’re an 80-year old man who fell over and got a concussion, your doctor may prescribe you a certain path to take. However, a 20-year old man who suffers the same injury on the other side of the country might hear something different from their medical care provider.
The standard of care only applies to similar situations. Medical negligence lawyers have to prove that the standard of care was breached by the professional in question. They can only do this by showing similar cases or having other medical experts weigh in.
Proof of Harm
Once you know that a medical professional didn’t act in accordance with the standard of care, you need to prove that it caused you harm. This too, though, can be more difficult than it sounds.
Every year, doctors will see patients, prescribe a solution and, after executing it, the patient incurs an injury. For example, if you break a bone, your doctor will need to set it back into place. Putting it back into its correct position is known as reduction.
Doing so often requires anesthesia, but it can also result in a certain degree of “injury” to the area (e.g. inflammation). This wouldn’t be considered an injury related to the doctor’s negligence though, so you’d have no lawsuit.
Instead, your injury must have come about because the medical professional was acting outside of the standard of care.
If this sounds complicated, then you now understand why medical negligence lawyers are so important. No one should ever try to take on one of these cases by themselves. You have a lot to prove and need a certain amount of expertise and experience to do so. Furthermore, you can bet the medical professional will have legal representation.
Always be on the safe side. If you think you’ve been harmed by a medical professional, call a lawyer ASAP to be sure.