Medical Malpractice Basics
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Some of the most horrific stories you’ll hear about are related to medical malpractice. The wrong leg is amputated, instruments are left inside patients after surgery, misdiagnosed diseases result in completely unnecessary treatments, and the list goes on. Though doctors and other medical professionals are among the most trusted professionals in society, when they make mistakes on the job, those mistakes can cost not only money, but lives.
The horror stories make it seem like medical malpractice cases are obvious and easy to prove, but that’s not always true. Patients don’t have to lose a limb or suffer severe pain to have a claim against their doctor for medical malpractice.
Ultimately, what a medical malpractice patient is required to prove in court is that:
1. The doctor failed to uphold the prevailing standard of care. This basically means that most competent doctors in your area would have diagnosed and treated you more successfully.
2. The doctor’s malpractice resulted in injury or damage to you. This can be small or large, but whether you had to pay for $1,000 of useless medication or whether you lost the use of your leg because of medical malpractice, you simply have to prove that your loss would not have happened if your doctor had done her job reasonably prudently.
Once you determine that you have suffered damage because of medical malpractice, you still need to decide whether you can prove it. It will help to have records of doctor’s bills and medications, your notes from what the doctor told you at each treatment or consultation session, and witnesses who can help prove that the damage did not exist before the treatment. It is often necessary in medical malpractice cases for another doctor or other medical expert to testify as to what the standard of care is for your area, and how your doctor’s medical malpractice caused your damage.
If you feel that you have suffered needlessly because of medical malpractice, it is best to immediately consult with an experienced medical malpractice attorney. Such an attorney can help you decide what your damages are, what you’ll be able to prove, and what you can expect to recover in court.
If you are in need of a legal malpractice, personal injury, medical malpractice, accident, or whistleblower lawyer in Tampa, Florida, the Tampa Bay attorneys of Wagner, McLaughlin & Whittemore would be pleased to speak with you. We fight aggressively to protect the rights of our clients. Click here or call us today at (813) 225-4000 to schedule a free consultation.