Medical malpractice occurs when a hospital, doctor, or other healthcare professional, through a negligent act or omission, causes injury to a patient.
If you are injured by a hospital, a doctor, a nurse or other medical professional, how do you know if you have a claim for medical malpractice?
Here are some things that may help you decide:
- a doctor/patient relationship existed
- the doctor was negligent
- the doctor’s negligence caused the injury
- there was a failure to diagnose
- you received improper treatment
One of the elements of a medical malpractice lawsuit is “damages”. This means the plaintiff must have suffered damages in order for the defendant to be held liable. Even if you can prove that the defendant was negligent, but the negligence caused you no harm, you may not win your case.
What happens if you are improperly diagnosed? A failure to diagnose, or delayed diagnosis occurs when a doctor fails to identify a medical condition when they are presented with it. Not every misdiagnosis is medical malpractice. You will have to prove negligence and damages.
Medical Malpractice claims are tough. This is why you will need an experienced attorney on your side. Doctors and hospitals, and many times insurance companies are armed to fight these claims. You need armor too.
There is a rule in the state of Alabama called Common Complications (there are similar laws in most every state). A doctor or hospital cannot be found negligent for a common complication. However, if such a problem is not dealt with in a timely manner and other complications arise from that, you may have grounds for a lawsuit.
If you have legal questions about medical malpractice, please consult our Online Legal Directory to find an attorney in your area.