What to do if you suspect harm caused by medical malpractice

On Behalf of | Feb 29, 2024 | Medical Malpractice

Medical malpractice isn’t as rare as people think. Even those who are aware of the statistics about how frequently doctors make mistakes often fall victim to the logical fallacy of assuming that malpractice could never affect their family. Unfortunately, some people reach the uncomfortable realization that they or a member of their immediate family may have experienced medical malpractice.

Malpractice can involve negligence, such as a doctor failing to do what is necessary to protect a patient. Other times, medical malpractice might involve a doctor being very unprofessional in the standard of care that they provide. Failing to follow the rules established by an employer or the organization that governs a specific field of medical specialization could also be medical malpractice.

What should someone do when they believe that they have experienced medical malpractice?

Request copies of medical records

The first step in developing a medical malpractice case often involves reviewing the official medical record of the affected individual. People typically have a right to their medical records, although some hospitals and medical practices do require that people pay for printed copies of their records. Those records can help someone identify an error made by their physician. Other times, there might be gaps in the record or erroneous information that they need to address.

Secure a second opinion

Medical records are crucial when determining whether malpractice occurred. Another medical professional can look over what a doctor did to determine if they made any major errors in judgment or failed to do what another reasonable physician would in the same situation. The opinion of another medical professional can be crucial for someone trying to determine whether what they experienced was malpractice or not.

Documenting the consequences

Someone who experiences medical malpractice may require additional treatment or may have a worse overall outcome to their medical care because of the type of support they received. A medical malpractice claim typically involves not just allegations that a doctor or facility did not provide proper care but also a request for compensation. People have to show what medical expenses, lost wages and other costs the malpractice generated if they hope to secure compensation.

Obtain appropriate support

Corporate medical practices typically have attorneys who represent them during scenarios that could lead to financial losses. Someone already coping with their own injuries or the harm caused to a family member through malpractice may not be in the best position to handle negotiations with insurance providers.

Especially if the case may end up going to court, getting appropriate help can make a major difference to the likelihood of success. Knowing how to respond after experiencing medical malpractice may empower people to hold healthcare professionals accountable for their negligent mistakes.