Medical malpractice arises when a health care provider fails to act or acts in a way that deviates from the profession’s standards. Malpractice usually involves a medical error in either stage of treatment: diagnosis, medication dosage, treatment, health management or aftercare. If you are a victim of medical malpractice, you are entitled to compensation for the harm you suffered as a result.
Therefore, it is important to protect your legal rights if you have been accorded substandard medical care. Below are the basic requirements of a medical malpractice claim:
A doctor-patient relationship existed
You must show that you contracted the services of the doctor in their capacity as a healthcare provider. For instance, you cannot claim malpractice if you asked a doctor a casual medical question when you saw them at a social gathering. However, if you went and saw the doctor and they began treating you, that is enough to prove a patient-doctor relationship.
The doctor’s care was negligent
You need to show that the doctor acted negligently. If their actions or inaction caused you harm, you need to show that another competent doctor would have acted differently in similar circumstances. Here, your doctor’s care is not supposed to be the best. Instead, it should meet the threshold of reasonable and skillful care that would be expected of them.
The negligence caused you an injury
You must show that the doctor’s negligence led to an actual injury. In other words, if a doctor misdiagnosed you but you got a second opinion that was correct and there was actually no harm done to you, you wouldn’t have a claim.
The injury led to damages on your part
If you suffered harm, you must show the related damages. These can be anything from the financial cost of your treatment to physical pain and suffering brought about by your injuries.
By satisfying these four elements, you may have a medical malpractice case. However, navigating a medical malpractice case is not so straightforward. You need to make informed decisions to ensure that you are adequately compensated for all your injuries and suffering due to medical malpractice.