We have so much trust in medical professionals, yet medical mistakes constitute a significant percentage of deaths. Have you or someone you love been affected by errors done by a medical professional? Chances are you are thinking of taking legal action against them.
However, before contacting a lawyer and filing a lawsuit, you need to determine if your case was due to medical malpractice or negligence. The difference between the two depends on the intent of the medical care provider.
In as much as you are hiring a professional, it is important to have a basic understanding of these terms. Learn the difference from a Miami medical malpractice attorney who has years of experience handling medical malpractice claims.
According to law, medical malpractice happens when the medical care provider breaches their duty by intent, not carelessness. The medical provider is aware of their actions and the potential consequences, but proceeds.
It is specific to an error or mistake which can cause the patient harm, or at the extreme, death. For example, you can disclose to the doctor that you have an allergy to a particular medication. If the doctor goes ahead to prescribe the same medication you can’t take, that is medical malpractice.
In case the patient suffers any harm due to adverse side effects of the medication, or dies from it, the family can take legal action. Note that not all adverse outcomes are linked to malpractice. Every medication and operation has unclear outcomes.
Like malpractice, in medical negligence, the medical professional will breach their duty. However, it is out of carelessness and not intent. It could be through ignorance, or failure to take action when needed.
For example, if a doctor fails to follow the set standards during a check-up, he is negligent. In the case of medical negligence, the doctor doesn’t wish harm to the patient. Nonetheless, failure to take specific actions or recognize some factors could lead place the patient under a life-threatening circumstance.
The outcome of negligence doesn’t have to be harm, injury, or death. Medical negligence cases are more common and could be difficult to prove since they don’t result to harm.
Examples of medical malpractice and negligence
Here are some common cases of medical malpractice and negligence;
- Neglecting steps followed in procedures such as sanitizing equipment
- Performing nonconsensual operations
- Prematurely discharging a patient
- Performing unnecessary surgery
- Nurse or surgeon fatigue
- Poor communication
- Neglecting side effects or failing to realize drug interactions
Every routine check you attend poses a risk for error. It could be a mere slip of the needle or a surgical procedure gone wrong. Luckily, you can now identify whether your case is that of medical malpractice or negligence.
Do you believe you are a victim of malpractice? To continue with any claim, you need to seek the help of a trusted and experienced attorney. They will assist you in determining whether your case warrants legal action. Your attorney will also guide you on how to go about it.