Patients put a great amount of trust in medical professionals to care for them. However, these individuals are also simply human. This means they are subject to human error, just like anyone else. It is because of this they may find themselves in a sticky situation such as committing medical malpractice. The last thing a medical professional wants to face is a malpractice claim. This can not only impact their medical license but their life and reputation. It is because of this that it is important to be aware of such situations. If you were accused of committing malpractice, it is crucial that you retain the services of an experienced New York medical defense attorney for assistance.
What Is Considered Medical Malpractice?
A proper definition for medical malpractice is a form of negligence by a healthcare professional or doctor. Simply put, this is when a medical professional fails to provide their patient with the proper standard of care, resulting in an injury or worsening condition. Actions that can be considered medical malpractice can include the following:
- Misreading or ignoring laboratory results
- Failure to recognize symptoms
- Failure to order proper testing
- Anesthesia errors
- Surgical errors or wrong-site surgery
- Unnecessary surgery
- Premature discharge
- Disregarding or not accepting appropriate patient history
- Improper medication or dosage
- Hospital infections
- Delayed diagnosis
Defenses Against Malpractice Claims
When a medical professional is facing a medical malpractice lawsuit, it is important to know there are options for defense. Usually, the best method is to disprove negligence. However, the following are additional defenses:
- Respectable Minority Principle: This protects doctors against malpractice claims for doing their job. For example, doctors who conducted a more radical form of treatment that caused injuries may find a claim filed against them. However, if a “respectable minority” of medical professionals supports the decision, it may provide them with a defense.
- Contributory Negligence: When professionals can prove that their patient would not have sustained an injury if it weren’t for negligence on their own behalf.
- Good Samaritan Laws: Doctors who try to save a person in an emergency and cause injuries in the process are usually protected from civil liability.
- Statute of Limitations: New York provides patients with a deadline of 3 years to file a medical malpractice lawsuit. If a patient does not meet this deadline, the case may be dismissed.
Contact our Firm
When a medical professional is accused of misconduct, it is essential that they retain strong legal representation. If you require a medical law attorney for your legal matters, call Paul E. Walker, an experienced New York City OPMC & OPD Lawyer. Please contactthe Walker Medical Law firm to set up a free initial consultation.