Can I Lose My License for Medical Malpractice or Negligence?

In your long-term tenure as a New York State physician, there may come an incident where a patient accuses you of medical malpractice or medical negligence. This patient may go as far as taking legal action against you. With all of this, you may feel as though the respectability of your medical license is being threatened. Continue reading to learn whether you can lose your license in a medical malpractice or negligence civil lawsuit and how one of the experienced New York physician defense lawyers at Walker Medical Law can represent you during this time.

What is the difference between medical malpractice and medical negligence?

Though oftentimes used interchangeably, you must understand that the terms “medical malpractice” and “medical negligence” hold different meanings. For one, medical malpractice occurs when a physician fails to meet the medical standard of care established by their colleagues, to the point that a patient suffers from an illness, injury, or other damages.

On the other hand, medical negligence is a physician’s failure to meet the medical standard of care without necessarily resulting in a patient’s injury. However, such repeated, negligent behavior may cause a patient’s injury in the future. In other words, the general public may be at significant risk of harm if a physician is allowed to continue practicing medicine.

In the end, though, you must understand that both accusations of medical malpractice or medical negligence may lead to your being a defendant in a civil lawsuit.

Can I lose my license in a medical malpractice or negligence civil lawsuit?

The short answer is losing your medical license cannot be one of the penalties placed against you in your civil lawsuit proceedings. This is because the jury for a civil case does not hold the right to decide whether you should forfeit your medical license. Rather, their responsibility is exclusive to determining how much financial compensation you should give to a plaintiff for their incurred economic and non-economic damages.

However, your being a defendant in a civil lawsuit may catch the attention of the New York State Department of Health’s Office of Professional Medical Discipline (OPMC). With this, the OPMC board may run its own investigation against you, regardless of the final judgment of your civil case (i.e., at fault or not at fault for medical malpractice or medical negligence). Ultimately, if it finds you indeed guilty of medical malpractice or medical negligence, it has the authority to temporarily suspend or permanently revoke your medical license. This may come with a slew of other damaging penalties.

Whenever you are ready, one of the skilled New York physician defense lawyers is here to provide legal assistance. So please schedule your initial consultation with Walker Medical Law today.