Medical Negligence
Health Care law

Medical Negligence: Everything You Need To Know

| February 9, 2021

The term “Medical Negligence” is often used for medical malpractice. Strictly speaking, medical negligence is the practice of overlooking medical duties that result in health-related issues. 

While medical negligence has become a legal concept, these kinds of cases are now seen as criminal activities. Negligence is itself not enough to be considered as a valid claim, but if the negligence is integrated with a patient’s health, there may be a good case.

What Is Medical Negligence?

What Is Medical Negligence?

Medical negligence is the combination of two words. The second word solely defines the meaning. Though the meaning of negligence is not described properly anywhere, it is considered an act of recklessness resulting in foreseeable damages.

Medical negligence is nothing but misconduct of a medical professional that results in breaching their conduct of duties. As long as no one is harmed, you do not have any valid claims where you can prove this to be a criminal activity; however, as soon as someone is injured due to negligence, it becomes a more serious matter.

This practice can take away the medical professional’s job or can even revoke the license to practice medical activities. 

What Are The 4 Ds Of Medical Negligence?

What Are The 4 Ds Of Medical Negligence?

Every medical professional practicing medical activities in one way or another needs to fulfill these 4Ds if caused by a lawsuit of medical malpractice claims.

1. Duty

Duty

Here duty means the health care services that the medical professionals are liable to give every patient. A patient needs to demonstrate that they have an established relationship with the health care provider. This relationship will provide valid proof that the health care promised them a duty of care.

Every professional medical official needs to follow the protocols and exercise compassion while handling patients in the medical world. Conversely, if the medical professional believes that they are not qualified to take care of the patients, they need to refer them to relevant medical professionals.

2. Deviation

Deviation

Physicians and healthcare providers who lack providing the industry standard of healthcare can be held liable for medical malpractice. To prove medical malpractice, the patients need to demonstrate that the medical professional or health care providers didn’t follow medical standards.

Examples of medical practice deviations:

  • Diagnosing the patient too late
  • Mistreating the patients
  • Using medication for external use
  • Doing unnecessary procedures
  • Committing a surgical error
  • Prescribing incorrect medicine

3. Damages

Damages

The patience is also liable to show the damages that have been caused due to medical malpractice. The damages can be of any kind. However, even if the patient has shown the damages, they need to prove that these damages result from medical malpractice.

The evidence might include the followings:

  • Medical records
  • Prescription records
  • Cost of corrective treatments
  • Statements from other physicians

4. Direct Cause

Direct Cause

Finally, the patients need to prove that the deviation is the direct cause of theory injuries. For instance, a patient has broken this hand; the broken hand is taking more than needed time to heal just because the medical practitioners do not place the cast according to medical industry standards.

Read Also: What Is Administrative Law

How Do You Prove Medical Negligence?

Prove Medical Negligence

The toughest part of medical negligence is to prove it. There are just too many variables that you need to consider before filing a medical malpractice lawsuit. Even if you somehow filter out the variables, the whole process is too complex.

We have streamlined the process down below to make it easy.

1. Establishing A Relationship Between Health Care Provider And Patients

Before you can file a lawsuit against the medical professional or healthcare providers, the claimants need to show their patients-doctor relationship. Without the right documents showing a valid relationship, the patients cannot file lawsuits for medical negligence.

This is not that difficult. If a doctor has seen you and has prescribed you medicine, you can provide that as documents.

2. The Medical Standard Of Care

The Medical Standard Of Care

Did the medical staff that took care of you have the skills according to the medical industry standard? It is very important that you keep an eye on these things. The medical industry has a minimum level of standard for every medical service. If you find that they lack in that aspect, you can file a lawsuit against them.

However, most people are not aware of the minimum medical industry-standard of taking care of patients. In that case, you can take the testimony of other medical professionals.

3. Link Between Medical Negligence And Patient Injury

It is not enough to show that your health provider has made mistakes that other professionals might not have made. You also need to show that the defendant’s action is one of the reasons for your deteriorating health.

The trick here is to ensure that you focus on proving that your degrading health is due to the reason of their poor or substandard care system.

4. Quantifiable Proof Of Harm

Quantifiable Proof Of Harm

Finally, you need to provide documents that show that you have accrued damages. In the medical negligence case, the damages might include the cost of other medical expenses apart from original injury expenses, income that the plaintiff lost due to injuries, and future medical expenses.

In addition to that, the medical malpractice plaintiff can even ask for compensation for the pain and suffering.

5. Proof By Preponderance Of The Evidence

The patients who have been injured due to the medical professions’ malpractice or health care provider must establish proof by a preponderance of the evidence. The proof by preponderance means every piece of evidence is relevant.

However, the medical malpractice claimants have some legal hurdles that they must cross. This even includes the notice-of-claim requirements.

Take Away

Medical negligence happens only in some places; however, these medical malpractices are unnoticed until some serious damage is done due to lack of knowledge. If this ever happens to you, be sure to prepare yourself with a medical malpractice lawyer.

We hope that this article was able to highlight the things you were looking for. For more legal content and information, stay tuned to The Legal Guides.

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Lucia Patterson
Lucia Patterson

Lucia Patterson is the woman behind TheLegalGuides, a blog solely focused on legal guides, tips, and advice. Lucia is passionate about Legal and blog TheLegalGuides in her free time.

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