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This website includes general information about legal issues and developments in the law. Such materials are for informational purposes only and may not reflect the most current legal developments. All material on this site is not intended, and must not be taken, as legal advice. Contact a licensed attorney in your jurisdiction for advice on specific legal issues or problems. Receipt of information from and use of this website to contact Gilman & Bedigian or one of its lawyers does not create an attorney-client relationship. Please do not send any confidential information until an attorney-client relationship has been established.
As the field of medicine has advanced in capability and courage, so have the scope of possible mishaps, and throughout the course of medical malpractice history, there have been some veritably unbelievable cases. Cerebral palsy resulting from mistakes in the birthing process has been seen a number of times, and almost invariably results in enormous payouts. One mother was awarded $74.5 million after her child was born with cerebral palsy and her physicians falsified records to cover up wrongdoing.
A doctor-patient relationship existed. You must show that you had a physician-patient relationship with the doctor you are suing -- this means you hired the doctor and the doctor agreed to be hired. For example, you can't sue a doctor you overheard giving advice at a cocktail party. If a doctor began seeing you and treating you, it is easy to prove a physician-patient relationship existed. Questions of whether or not the relationship exists most frequently arise where a consulting physician did not treat you directly.
If it is not clear, the doctor’s employment status is something that will be resolved in court. There are also some instances where the doctor will be treated  as if  she were a hospital employee because the plaintiff was led to believe that was the case. If the doctor is an employee or is treated as if he is an employee, the plaintiff can sue the hospital for medical malpractice, and must prove everything that is required to win a medical malpractice case.
Specifically, in arena of medical negligence, physician has duty to use that degree of care and skill which is expected of reasonably competent practitioner in same class to which physician belongs acting in same or similar circumstances. Unlike ordinary negligence cases, proving that a health care professional breached his or her duty of care involves showing what a reasonably competent health care professional would have done in a similar situation - and that your doctor didn't.
Unfortunately, the answer is only maybe, and it may take a long time. American patients that opt to leave the United States to have procedures done overseas probably do not realize that they may be foregoing the legal protection of the American court system. This is part of the reason why procedures performed overseas are so much cheaper: other nations do not have the stringent legal and administrative protections required of American doctors. This could leave a patient bearing most of the brunt of any legal risks associated with such a procedure because it can be very difficult to successfully sue foreign doctors in the US or to bring an action as a foreign citizen overseas.
According to the act, when the patient arrives at the ER or urgent care center, the hospital must determine whether the patient’s condition constitutes an emergency. If it does, the hospital must make all reasonable efforts to stabilize the patient. If a hospital fails to comply with the act, the patient may sue the hospital for both the monetary equivalent of the harm caused by the failure, and for an additional penalty of up to $50,000.
There are two steps to complaining. The first is to makes a complaint to the NHS hospital trust or Primary Care Practice where the treatment was received, under their own complaints procedure (which they will provide on request). If you are unsatisfied with the response you receive, you can then move to the second stage, which is to refer the matter to the Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman.
Differential diagnosis is a systemic method used by doctors to identify a disease or condition in a patient. Based upon a preliminary evaluation of the patient, the doctor makes a list of diagnoses in order of probability. The physician then tests the strength of each diagnosis by making further medical observations of the patient, asking detailed questions about symptoms and medical history, ordering tests, or referring the patient to specialists. Ideally, a number of potential diagnoses will be ruled out as the investigation progresses, and only one diagnosis will remain at the end. Of course, given the uncertain nature of medicine, this is not always the case.
The medical industry uniquely benefits from broad autonomy and self-regulation. Standardization of care and general oversight work to balance physician autonomy, and some may say they even erode that autonomy to an extent. Health Maintenance Organizations (HMOs) enforce patterns of practice to which providers must adhere. Emerging technologies throughout the 20th century paved the way for new treatment methods, but they also “raised patient expectations [while] multiplying the possibilities for mishaps.” In an examination of the interplay of autonomy and oversight, the Drexel Law Review wrote "Standardization and oversight serve to further reinforce patient expectations. By way of contrast, a disorganized profession typified by idiosyncratic practices discourages perceptions of consistent quality. Formal organization of the medical profession was intended, in part, to counter this characterization.”
I didn’t and don’t have cancer….I have 2 disk in my neck that are bulging and both hands needed carpal tunnel surgery…my dr gave me 120 10 mg hydrcodone a month, 120 tramadol a month, 90 oxycodone a month and 60 dulauda a month plus Valium and 90 adderall. ….then cold turkey dismissed me, I just list my insurance but paid cash everytime I went….I’m going through he’ll now
Texas passed a "tort reform" law taking effect on September 1, 2003.[44] The act limited non-economic damages (e.g., damages for pain and suffering) in most malpractice cases to $250,000 across all healthcare providers and $250,000 for healthcare facilities, with a limit of two facilities per claim.[44][45] As of 2013, Texas was one of 31 states to cap non-economic damages.[44]

Yahoo fait partie d’Oath. Oath et ses partenaires ont besoin de votre consentement pour accéder à votre appareil et utiliser vos données, notamment votre position géographique, afin de comprendre vos centres d’intérêt, de diffuser des publicités personnalisées et de mesurer leur efficacité. Oath vous présentera également des publicités personnalisées sur les produits de ses partenaires. En savoir plus.


Special medical malpractice review panels. Many states require the patient to first submit the claim to a malpractice review panel. This panel of experts will hear arguments, review evidence and expert testimony, and then decide whether malpractice has occurred. The panel decision does not replace an actual medical malpractice lawsuit, and the panel cannot award damages, but it's a hoop the patient must jump through before getting to court. The findings of the review panel can be presented in court, and courts often rely on a review panel's finding of no medical malpractice to throw out a case before it goes to trial.
I have had the some problem with my Doctors. You have to ring at 8am to get an appointment. So i did and the phone rang and rang when you get the secretary she said’s sorry you will have to try again tomorrow all the appointments have gone. Its my back I tell her but she said’s take some pain killers and ring back tomorrow like I haven’t taken some pain killers. In the end I had an ambulance at my door with gas and air a few day later. Why can I not make an appointment when I need one it puts me off ever phoning them . I will always now think twice about doing so again and I could end up in a worst state.
Your attorney should also disclose “bad facts” in the opening statement.[20] A bad fact is anything the defense would want to bring to the jury’s attention because it makes the defense case much stronger. For example, your failure to follow your doctor’s prescribed treatment is a bad fact. By disclosing bad facts first, your attorney can take the sting out of them.
The second main component of your case will be the establishment of medical malpractice  damages. To sue the doctor, it’s not enough that he or she failed to treat or diagnose a disease or injury in time; it must also have caused additional injury. That means showing exactly how -- and to what extent -- the delay in the provision of medical care harmed you. This will also usually require the testimony of an expert medical witness.
Doctor Mistake, Serious Injury – Despite significant harm to the patient, sometimes it is impossible to prove a case of medical malpractice against a physician.  For example, an older patient with a heart condition may die after receiving the wrong medication.  After an investigation, experts may determine that although the physician prescribed the wrong medication, the incorrectly prescribed drug had the intended effect on the patient.  In this case, there is physician negligence (for prescribing the incorrect medication), but no causation (the mistake did not cause the harm to the patient).
According to the act, when the patient arrives at the ER or urgent care center, the hospital must determine whether the patient’s condition constitutes an emergency. If it does, the hospital must make all reasonable efforts to stabilize the patient. If a hospital fails to comply with the act, the patient may sue the hospital for both the monetary equivalent of the harm caused by the failure, and for an additional penalty of up to $50,000.
In order to successfully prosecute a medical malpractice lawsuit, the party bringing the action (the plaintiff) must prove by a preponderance of the evidence that the negligent act of a healthcare provider caused injury to the plaintiff. The entire burden of proof resides on the plaintiff; the government need not even present a witness. In order to prove its case, the plaintiff must present the testimony of qualified experts who support his position. Identifying experts and working with them is a major part of preparing your case for trial. Our firm retains only experts of impeccable character and the highest professional credentials. We do this to ensure that when we get to trial, the United States will be unable to attack our case by attacking our experts.
Now I find myself with a new doctor that is scared of the DEA – they have prosecuted tons of doctors at this point and this new doctor wants to do nothing but cover her butt. So she takes_me_off_the_meds_I’ve_been _stable_on_for_9_years ….. and switches me to 2x long-acting (12 hrs – yeah try 8..) “crush-resistant” (aka – take it 1.5 hrs before you need relief or your previous dose wears off – whatever comes first) pills with some reasonable break thru meds…
The situation is different for patients injured in an emergency room. Usually, the hospital does not have an opportunity to inform emergency room patients that a doctor is not an employee. This means that ER patients can often sue the hospital for a doctor's medical malpractice. There are also a few states that say a hospital can be sued for emergency room malpractice regardless of what the patient believed or was told. (To learn more, read Nolo's article Medical Malpractice During Emergencies.)
Rather, the law only requires medical professionals to act according to the proper standard of care. If you have evidence that your doctor violated this standard when failing to diagnose your condition, then you may have a legitimate malpractice claim. Oftentimes, an expert witness will be called in to determine whether a medical professional did indeed violate his or her standard of care.
Ex.: Texas has a two-year statute of limitations for medical malpractice cases, and has adopted the continuous treatment rule. If a doctor in Texas causes an injury during surgery, and continues to treat the patient for that injury for 4 more years, then the statute of limitations does not begin to run until the doctor has completed treatment. So, the patient in this example has a total of 6 years to file a lawsuit after the injury was inflicted.
I see why malpractice insurance is high. I think in many cases it's the attitude that goes along with the malpractice that leads to legal action being taken. I understand that that's not always the case, and sometimes it is simply an accident. However, I know in my family's situation had there been even a tiny morsel of remorse by the physician who treated my grandfather he wouldn't have had to travel to the state capitol. Misreading the fuzzy xray may have been an accident, but sending my grandfather home unable to walk or care for himself, in terrible pain with no pain medication for his broken hip was not an accident. We didn't profit from it, but the physician did have to get an attorney/attorneys when he faced the medical board - so you can blame people like him for the increase in your rates. Had he said he was sorry and not been such an a-- to my grandfather he wouldn't have had to go try to defend himself. He lost, by the way. Had to pay a fine and take some classes. He probably deserved more than he got, but it was something.

This answer is offered for informational purposes only. It is not offered as, and does not constitute, legal advice. Laws vary widely from state to state. You should rely only on the advice given to you during a personal consultation by a local attorney who is thoroughly familiar with state laws and the area of practice in which your concern lies. In the event that you have follow up questions, please post them directly on this site. This does not create an attorney-client relationship and the attorney does not read unsolicited emails. Thank You.
In this case a surgeon was sued by his patient following complications from a laparoscopic cholecystectomy (gall bladder removal). Before the procedure he explained the risks of the surgery to her, and she also asked him questions about his experience and success rate with the procedure. She asked additional questions about whether he had ever been sued for malpractice or had any action taken against his medical license. He answered no to both questions and added that he had an almost perfect success rate with the surgery. Well, bad things happened. The patient suffered a perforated intestine and an infection. She later found out that the doctor had lost a patient during this same procedure, and that he was disciplined for the board as a result of that case.
^ William M. Sage, M.D., Margaret Thompson, Cynthia Gorman, Melissa King. [ The Jury's Still Out: A Critical Look at Malpractice Reform], Center for American Progress, June 12, 2008. From the study, "There is no nationwide crisis [...] Malpractice is wrongly blamed for rising health care costs in the United States...Experts have found little correlation between malpractice claim increases and malpractice premium increases. "
Army Medical Malpractice Cancer $701,790 received by clients $250,000 attorneys' fees $48,209 litigation expenses Owen v. United States Darnall Army Community Hospital Our client underwent surgery at the U.S. Army MEDDAC in Nuremberg, Germany. Following surgery, our client transferred her care to DACH. Despite pathology results that revealed cancer, Ft.

I do get fed up with media criticism of a “failing NHS”; it’s not failing – it’s doing an incredibly good job in the circumstances. I also get fed up with my generation being blamed for living too long and putting a strain on the NHS. The failure of planning for the country’s future needs goes back to the early years of this century and cannot be laid at the door of the present government. The government either has to limit the rise in population, or invest in the resources to meet its demands, or do a bit of both. Doing neither has got us to where we are today.
In this article, we will discuss whether you can sue for medical malpractice years after treatment. The short answer is, yes, you can, since most states give you two to three years to bring a claim after malpractice occurs. The longer answer is, it depends on the type of injury and the state in which the claim is brought. Below, we will go through various examples of when the "countdown" begins for purposes of the statute of limitations deadline.
The concept of medical responsibility can be traced back to the Code of Hammurabi, which is an extensive legal document from ancient Mesopotamia. The Code of Hammurabi states that, “If the doctor has treated a gentlemen with a lancet of bronze and has caused the gentleman to die, or has opened an abscess of the eye for a gentleman with a bronze lancet, and has caused the loss of the gentleman’s eye, one shall cut off his hands” (Smith 1931 as cited within Bal 2009). Of course, penalties for malpractice in most modern, developed nations are much more civilized. However, the Code of Hammurabi introduced the concept of holding medical professionals accountable for deaths or injuries that could have reasonably been prevented.
Cancer survivor and seven-time Tour de France winner Lance Armstrong switched oncologists because he wasn't comfortable with the language the first doctor used to describe his treatment ("I'm going to hit you with chemo... kill you and then bring you back to life."), Gary M. Reisfield, MD, and George R. WilsonIII, MD,of the University of Florida Health Science Center wrote in the Journal of Clinical Oncology in 2004. Armstrong found another oncologist whose approach better suited him.
The fundamental elements of litigated medical malpractice are, above all, duty and negligence. Historic efforts define these two elements were muddled - fourteenth-century law under Henry V held that the physician owed a duty of care to the patient because medicine was a “common calling” (a profession), and required physicians to exercise care and prudence. Those in other professions who did not practice a "common calling” were liable only if an express promise had been made to achieve or avoid a certain result. In the absence of such a promise, the professional could not be held liable. Physicians, then, were held to a separate standard because of the nature of their profession. Modern notions of negligence are parallel to what history called the “carelessness” of early physicians. The notion of duty was legally elucidated in British common law. Carelessness and neglect were not in and of themselves causes of action lest the practitioner by nature of their profession had a duty to the person to whom they rendered care. The law determined that medical professionals were legally bound by a duty of care to their patients. Negligence was thereby grounds for legal action. The establishment of duty and negligence laid the foundation for Anglo-American legislation of medical malpractice.
It’s vital to note, however, that the prosecution of medical malpractice cases—in addition to having a high likelihood of failure—can be extremely expensive, stressful and time-consuming. It’s estimated that medical errors kill roughly 200,000 patients in the U.S. each year. Yet only 15% of the personal-injury lawsuits filed annually involve medical-malpractice claims, and more than 80% of those lawsuits end with no payment whatsoever to the injured patient or their survivors.
Experience: All attorneys are not created equal. Many attorneys today work as general practice attorneys, meaning they handle all types of cases from criminal matters to civil suits. However, if you have experienced a case of medical negligence, it is important to have an attorney who specializes in medical malpractice. You do not want a lawyer whose first trial is going to be this case. Even attorneys who specialize in civil matters rarely go to court, as many of their cases settle without a trial. At The O’Keefe Firm, Stephen O’Keefe has had years of actual trial experience specializing in medical malpractice cases. Although your case may be resolved without stepping into the courtroom, you can be assured that Mr. O’Keefe has the trial experience necessary to fight for your rights in front of a jury.

Doctors typically require patients to sign a consent form detailing the risks of any given treatment or procedure. But signing a form alone does not necessarily prove that the patient gave informed consent. The doctor must actually discuss the procedure and risks with the patient. And the patient must understand, to the extent possible, the risks he or she faces.


Anyone familiar with the Hippocratic oath understands the undeniable bond between medical care and ethics—ideally, physicians are driven by the desire to help patients, not hurt them. Yet, harm does sometimes occur, and patients have the right to hold such doctors accountable in a court of law. While the topic of not telling the truth poses more of an ethical question than a legal one, there are established legal boundaries for medical professionals that, when crossed, could justify a lawsuit.
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