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How do I prove that I have been injured through medical negligence?
- March 29, 2017
There are many situations where people have been the victim of medical malpractice. They believe the negligence of a licensed medical professional caused them harm or injury. Unless they have an extensive history and experience with the medical profession, they may not know how to prove their claim. This is the time they should speak with a knowledgeable attorney experienced in handling medical malpractice cases.
Duty of Care
In order to be successful in a medical malpractice case, the victim must be able to prove the licensed medical professional had a duty of care to them. The victim must have formally engaged the licensed medical professional for some type of treatment. They must then prove the licensed medical professional failed to provide the type of treatment expected by their profession. This failure must have resulted in the victim being damaged or experiencing harm. This can be a challenge. The treatment provided by a medical professional may be difficult for people not in the medical field to understand.
Standard Of Care
When a court is considering a medical malpractice case, it will require the defendant to prove the licensed medical professional was negligent in their diagnosis or treatment. The individual who provided the treatment must have violated their profession’s standard of care. This is the level of care that would be provided by a competent and skilled licensed medical professional. This may require hiring expert witnesses to speak on behalf of the victim. These are experienced licensed medical professionals such as doctors, pharmacists and more. These experts will know if the standard of care was not met by the diagnosis and treatment that was provided. These medical experts will contrast what happened with what should have happened in the case of the victim.
The burden of proof in a medical malpractice case is on the victim. They must provide a preponderance of evidence showing that the licensed medical professional was responsible for the victim’s harm or injuries. This means the victim must prove it was the actions of the medical professional that directly caused them damage or injury. The defendant will allege that what happened to the victim is something to be expected. The result was caused by the victim’s disease or condition. They will try to prove the victim’s body failed to cure itself after receiving treatment.
Caused By Negligence
A victim must prove more than the licensed medical professional was negligent in the care they provided. A victim must also be able to show the treatment they received for their harm or injury caused their condition to become worse. They can also try to show they experienced additional medical complications as a result of the negligent treatment they received. It must be shown the victim’s current medical condition would not have resulted except for the negligent care provided by the licensed medical professional.
Types Of Damages
A victim of medical malpractice will be required to provide a court with the details of the harm or damage they experienced from the medical malpractice. A victim could have experienced general damages. These don’t have a clearly defined monetary value, but an experienced attorney can provide a good estimate. These damages could involve pain and suffering as well as the loss of the enjoyment of life, loss of consortium as well as future earning capacity and more. There are also special damages. These damages are designed to cover tangible expenses. This includes such things as medical bills associated with the medical malpractice as well as lost wages, earning capacity and more. There are also punitive damages. This is given to licensed medical professionals who knowingly cause damage or harm to a patient. Should a surgeon intentionally leave surgical implements inside a patient, so additional surgery is required, this would be a good reason for a court to award a victim punitive damages.
All Elements Must Be Proven
When a person is pursuing a medical malpractice lawsuit, they must be able to prove all the elements of the case by a preponderance of the evidence. This standard means that everything the victim claims must be able to be shown as the truth. This makes it a very complex case to prove. It is a very complicated situation that will require the skills of an attorney experienced in handling medical malpractice cases to succeed.