It can be frightening to imagine, but thousands of people are injured every year by doctors, nurses and other staff while seeking medical treatment. Some studies have estimated that as many as 100,000 people die in American hospitals every year because of some kind of medical error, whether it’s a surgical mistake, misdiagnosis or medication error. The vast majority of these mistakes are entirely preventable, a tragedy for the loved ones of those injured or killed as a result of medical malpractice.
Charleston, SC is has a number of local hospitals where some of these medical malpractice events can potentially occur. If you believe that you or a loved one has suffered harm due to the negligence or medical malpractice of a Hospital doctor or staff member, please consider my suggestions below.
If you or someone you know has been the victim of possible medical malpractice, the very first thing you should do is seek treatment for your injuries. Time is of the essence and it is crucial that you not only have your injuries recorded in a medical record, but that you also have your condition treated as soon as possible, allowing you the best opportunity to recover.
The doctor needs to know about your complete history, meaning you should feel free to explain your previous treatment and what you feel may have gone wrong. Make sure that the new doctor has access to your complete medical history, something that may prove crucial to diagnosing the problem.
Once you’ve sought out medical help and have had your condition treated, you will likely want to speak with an experienced South Carolina medical malpractice attorney about how to move forward. Medical malpractice cases are incredibly confusing and often require sophisticated medical knowledge, something that is generally beyond a normal person’s experience. By consulting a med mal lawyer, you can ensure that your case is given the best possible chance of success.
File a formal complaint
After you’ve hired an attorney, it is possible that you will need to file a formal complaint with the state medical board. In South Carolina, an injured patient would bring their case to the Board of Medical Examiners. When the report is filed, the board will typically initiate aninvestigation into the case. It is possible, depending on the outcome of the investigation, that the doctor could receive some form of disciplinary action, something that would go a long way to boosting your chance of success in a civil claim against the doctor and to ensuring that other patients are protected from experiencing similar harm.
File informal complaints
Beyond action with the state’s medical board, injured patients are also able to file complaints with hospitals where they received negligent treatment. Additionally, injured patients can also take to public websites to voice their dissatisfaction. Several doctor rating websites exist where patients who feel they have been treated negligently can go to raise their concerns.
File a lawsuit
Remember that filing a complaint, whether informal or formal, is not the same thing as filing a lawsuit. Though state medical examiners can launch an investigation into the case, there will be no monetary award or compensation without filing a medical malpractice claim against those responsible for your injuries. To do this, you will need to consult an experienced medical malpractice attorney who can guide you through the process and position your case to ensure you receive the maximum compensation possible.
Establishing A Medical Malpractice Case
If you were injured as a result of negligence from a doctor, nurse, pharmacy, hospital staff or another medical professional, you may have the right to file a medical malpractice claim. Medical malpractice is when a medical professional acts negligently either through an overt act, omission, misdiagnosis, or incorrect treatment or aftercare that causes direct injury and suffering to a patient.
The third leading cause of death is due to medical negligence. Oftentimes, the suffering that accompanies medical negligence is worse than the original medical condition being treated. If you suffered injuries due to medical malpractice, you will have to build a strong medical malpractice case to receive compensation.
Build a Strong Medical Malpractice Case
Every personal injury case, including medical malpractice cases, must prove the following four elements to have a valid claim in court.
- Duty. A doctor or other medical professional has a duty to those under their care to ensure that they are receiving medical care according to established medical standards. Medical professionals are responsible for diagnosing and treating medical conditions in an appropriate way to ensure that their patients are not harmed or suffer injury.
- Breach. Medical malpractice is when the duty of care from a medical professional is breached. The breach of duty must illustrate actual negligence such as a misdiagnosis, leaving a sponge in a patient after a medical procedure, or prescribing a medication incorrectly.
- Causation. Your case must prove to the court that your suffering and injuries were due to a direct result of the negligence of the medical professional.
- Damages. You must have suffered actual physical, emotional or financial damages in order to have a medical malpractice case against a doctor, nurse, pharmacists or another medical professional.
Contact an Experienced Personal Injury Attorney
If you were injured as a direct result of the negligence of a doctor, nurse, or another type of medical provider, you may have the right to receive compensation for your injuries, including medical bills, pain and suffering, and lost wages. Contact an experienced attorney at David Aylor Law Offices. We can help you understand your rights, and help you understand your next steps. Contact us today online or at (843) 212-2684.