suing for medical malpractice

It’s devastating when a medical mistake causes a patient to get worse instead of better. And these mistakes are more common than many people realize. A study from Johns Hopkins found that medical errors are the third leading cause of death in the United States, surpassed only by heart disease and cancer – and that’s not even considering the non-fatal injuries and illnesses that can be attributed to medical mistakes. If you or a loved one were harmed by a medical mistake, you may consider suing for medical malpractice. 

If you win a medical malpractice lawsuit, you could receive substantial compensation for medical bills, lost income, disability, suffering, and loss of quality of life. Pursuing such a lawsuit is a big step. You should consider your options carefully and get advice from an experienced medical malpractice attorney before making any decisions. 

Can I Sue My Doctor?

Not all medical mistakes meet the legal test for medical malpractice. To successfully sue your doctor for medical malpractice, your doctor must have been negligent, the negligence must have violated generally accepted standards of care for medical professionals, and the negligence must have caused harm. 

These are some common examples of medical errors that may be medical malpractice:

  • Failing to diagnose an illness or providing the wrong diagnosis
  • Providing the wrong treatment
  • Prescribing the wrong medication or the wrong dosage
  • Not correctly monitoring a patient
  • Leaving a surgical instrument inside a patient’s body
  • Improperly administering anesthesia
  • Not providing proper post-surgical care
  • Neglecting or abusing nursing home patients

In all of these situations, these errors may be medical malpractice if they breach professional standards and they cause harm. Whether an error breached professional standards is almost always a complex, technical question. Medical malpractice attorneys work with medical experts to determine whether the legal standard has been met. 

Can You Sue a Hospital for Medical Malpractice?

If the medical malpractice happened inside a hospital, for example, during surgery, you may be able to sue the hospital if the doctor was an employee of the hospital. In that case, the hospital, as the employer, could be held responsible for the doctor’s negligent actions or failures to act. Some doctors, though, are not employees of the hospital where they work but are independent contractors. Whether or not you will be able to sue the hospital in such circumstances is a legal question that may depend on several factors.  An experienced medical malpractice lawyer can determine the doctor’s employment status and whether the hospital can be sued.

What Should I Do Next If I’m Considering Suing for Medical Malpractice?

The first thing you should do is arrange a consultation with a medical malpractice lawyer who can evaluate your case, explain your options, and advise you on whether you should proceed with a lawsuit. The personal injury attorneys at Garmey Law have 60 years of combined experience with this highly technical area of the law alongside a track record of outstanding results. We are also connected with a network of medical experts to help us evaluate all aspects of the case before we even file suit.  We can guide you through the process and will always fight hard to ensure you achieve justice. Call us at (207) 481-4683, or contact us through our website for a free consultation.