Are we ever more vulnerable than when we are under anesthesia, completely out cold while a surgeon wields a scalpel over us? Or when we’re suffering from a serious illness, and we place our trust in someone we expect to be a responsible professional? So it’s that much more painful when one of these trusted experts makes a mistake that causes you or a loved one serious harm. Burg Simpson’s Denver medical malpractice lawyers understand how difficult, and expensive, these situations can be.
Broadly speaking, medical malpractice occurs when a health care professional negligently – by action or omission – injures a patient. This negligence can take the form of a mistaken diagnosis, an error in treatment, poor post-treatment care or bungled care management. But not every medical case that ends badly means someone committed malpractice. Even under the best of care and circumstances, sometimes treatments don’t work. Medical malpractice rules can vary wildly by state, including how much money an injured plaintiff can recover. Some states don’t limit damage amounts while others do impose caps. Some states limit certain types of damages. These laws can be tricky to navigate under the best of circumstances. When you or a family member are suffering in the aftermath of a botched medical procedure, for example, it can be nearly insurmountable. The Colorado medical injury lawyers at Burg Simpson can help.
FACTORS OF A MEDICAL MALPRACTICE CASE
To be considered medical malpractice, according to the American Board of Professional Liability Attorneys, the claim must include:
- Violation of the standard of care – The law recognizes that there are established medical standards a profession identifies as being acceptable medical treatment by reasonably prudent health care professionals under like or similar circumstances. This is what’s called “the standard of care.” A patient has the right to expect that all health care professionals will deliver care consistent with that standard. If it is determined that the standard of care hasn’t been met, then negligence may be established.
- The violation caused an injury – For a medical malpractice claim to be valid, it’s not enough that a health care professional simply violated the standard of care. The patient also must prove he sustained an injury that wouldn’t have occurred in the absence of negligence. An unfavorable outcome by itself isn’t malpractice. The patient must prove that negligence caused the injury. If there’s an injury without negligence or negligence that did not cause an injury, there is no case.
- The injury resulted in serious damages – Medical malpractice lawsuits are costly. Malpractice litigation often means hours of expert testimony of and dozens of depositions. The patient must show the injury resulted in substantial damage because of medical negligence. To pursue a medical malpractice claim, the patient must show that the injury resulted in disability, lost income, extreme pain, suffering and hardship, or large medical bills.
If you or a family member has suffered from medical negligence, reach out to our Colorado medical malpractice attorneys now to schedule your free initial consultation. We’ll review your medical malpractice claim and help you decide how we can best help you move forward.