When people are sick or have sustained an injury in an accident, they turn to their doctors and other medical professionals for help. Additionally, people rely on the preventative care that their doctors provide. When a medical professional makes a mistake, the consequences could be devastating or fatal. The failure to diagnose cancer, for example, could result in it spreading, making treatment much more difficult.
Our Bala Cynwyd medical malpractice lawyers at the Reiff Law Firm have represented victims of malpractice for decades. Our personal injury attorneys and staff are committed to holding healthcare professions accountable when their negligence results in harm or death. If you or a loved one was the victim of medical malpractice, call our office at (215) 709-6940 to schedule a free consultation.
Medical Malpractice in Bala Cynwyd
Medical professionals in Bala Cynwyd, including doctors, physician’s assistants, and nurses, owe a duty of care to their patients. This duty also extends to healthcare facilities. To understand medical malpractice, you need to understand the legal definition of “duty of care.” A medical professional has a legal responsibility to adhere to a standard of care to protect a person from unreasonable risk. This responsibility requires a healthcare provider to make decisions and take actions that a prudent and similarly skilled professional in the same practice area would make under comparable circumstances. The fundamental question is, “would another competent doctor have done the same thing?” This does not mean that all medical professionals must agree and that every error in judgment constitutes medical malpractice.
However, when a medical professional fails to adhere to the accepted standard of care, they could have committed malpractice. When this breach of duty results in an injury or harm to a patient, the patient has legal options. More importantly, a victim of medical malpractice is entitled to seek monetary compensation through a lawsuit in the Pennsylvania court system. Our Bala Cynwyd medical malpractice attorneys can assist you if you have been the victim of a preventable medical error.
Holding a Healthcare Professional Liable for Medical Malpractice in Bala Cynwyd
As stated above, every mistake a doctor makes does not constitute medical malpractice. Likewise, every poor or tragic result does not provide a legal basis for a lawsuit against a medical professional or healthcare facility.
To hold a doctor or another medical professional accountable for the harm you suffered, our Bala Cynwyd medical malpractice lawyer must be able to demonstrate four elements.
First, there must have been a doctor-patient relationship that established a duty of care to provide reasonable care to the injured individual. This relationship clearly exists between a person and their general practitioner, but it also extends to people a patient might not know, such as an anesthesiologist during a surgical procedure.
The second element is often the most challenging to prove. The medical professional must have breached the duty of care. Establishing that your doctor made a decision or that their actions failed to adhere to the acceptable standard of medical care requires presenting compelling evidence. Using medical records and the testimony of experts in the field, our office will try to show that your doctor’s conduct did not conform with standard medical procedures or treatment and committed a grievous error or lapse in judgment.
Next, the harm you suffered must be directly linked to the medical professional’s negligent conduct. If the outcome of your condition could not have been prevented, then even a terrible mistake by your physician might not constitute medical malpractice. You must be able to show that your doctor’s decisions or actions caused your injury. In many cases, this is the most challenging part of a medical malpractice claim.
To be compensated through a medical malpractice lawsuit, you must have suffered actual harm. If a doctor prescribes the wrong dosage of medicine and you lose a night’s sleep, then your discomfort probably does not require a lawsuit. However, if you need additional treatment, surgery, or lost time at work because of your injury, then you have sustained actual harm. Medical malpractice cases are complicated legal matters, so it is crucial to have our experienced Bala Cynwyd attorney working at your side.
Proving Medical Malpractice in Bala Cynwyd
Medical malpractice litigation is very complex and revolves around complicated subject matters and evidence. Convincing a jury that a rear-end collision caused your back injury is different than detailing the medical complications associated with a misdiagnosis.
Building a medical malpractice case takes patience and an experienced team of attorneys and staff. Our Bala Cynwyd medical malpractice attorney will review medical documents, interview personnel, and gather any other relevant evidence. More importantly, our office will consult with medical experts to help establish what should have occurred and exactly how a medical professional’s negligent conduct caused your injury.
Common Medical Malpractice Mistakes in Bala Cynwyd
Medical errors occur for a variety of reasons. Many hospitals and emergency rooms are understaffed, leading to nurses, doctors, and other healthcare providers being overworked, stressed, and tired. When a person’s mental and physical capabilities are strained, mistakes happen.
Other times, errors are the result of miscommunication or a lack of information. If a doctor fails to review a patient’s complete medical history, they could prescribe medication that negatively reacts with medication the patient is taking. Additionally, without understanding a patient’s medical history, a doctor could misinterpret the symptoms of a serious medical condition.
Failing to diagnose or misdiagnosing a person’s medical condition is another typical error doctors make. When this happens, a patient might undergo invasive and painful treatment that does not address the cause of their illness or not receive essential lifesaving care. Our medical malpractice attorneys is committed to holding medical professionals accountable for the harm they cause.
Call Our Bala Cynwyd Medical Malpractice Lawyer for a Free Consultation
If you or a loved one believe that you suffered harm due to a healthcare professional’s negligent conduct, contact our Bala Cynwyd medical malpractice attorney immediately. Pennsylvania law requires that a medical malpractice claim be filed within two years of the incident, so it is critical to begin building your case as soon as possible. Call the Reiff Law Firm at (215) 709-6940 to schedule a free appointment to review your legal options.