The Standard Of Care In A Florida Medical Malpractice Case
Although it can be difficult to accept that a medical provider may have caused a patient harm because of a careless mistake, this unfortunately ends up being the case for many patients. Fortunately, patients who find themselves wronged in this way can seek compensation from the at-fault parties by filing a medical malpractice claim. The success or failure of this type of claim, however, will depend on whether a plaintiff can prove that a medical provider violated his or her duty of care. This can be difficult to establish, so if you were hurt because of a healthcare provider’s negligence or a medical error, you should think about reaching out to an experienced Fort Lauderdale medical malpractice lawyer who can help you navigate this complex legal process.
What is Medical Malpractice?
Medical malpractice lawsuits are a type of legal claim wherein a patient can seek compensation when a medical provider’s conduct resulted in an injury. Providing medical care is a complex endeavor, so a person cannot file a medical malpractice claim merely because he or she was unhappy with the results of treatment. Instead, that person will need to have evidence that a healthcare provider failed to adhere to the proper standard of care. This failure typically takes the form of negligent care, medical errors, or wrongdoing during the diagnosis, treatment, health management, or after care of a patient.
Proving Medical Malpractice
To recover compensation after an injury or illness, a patient who is alleging medical malpractice against a healthcare provider must be able to prove that:
- The physician owed the patient a duty of care;
- The physician breached that duty of care;
- The physician’s conducted caused the patient’s injuries; and
- The patient suffered damages.
Often, in medical malpractice cases, establishing what qualifies as the standard of care and whether or not that standard was violated is the most difficult of these elements to prove.
What is the Standard of Care?
The standard of care for medical malpractice cases is the level of skill, care, and treatment that is recognized as appropriate, reasonable, and acceptable by other healthcare providers. The standard of care is not, however, the same in every case, but will vary depending on the circumstances, including where treatment was obtained, the level of care being provided, and the specialty in question. The standard of care in a rural town with little access to specialists would, for instance, be different from the standard of care at a hospital in a populous city.
Medical experts are typically required to help establish the standard of care in medical malpractice cases by assessing the facts to determine whether a reasonably cautious medical provider would have acted the same way in a similar situation. Medical experts whose opinions could be utilized to this end include those with healthcare degrees, who regularly engage in the practice of medicine, and who also meet the requirements of an expert witness.
Were You Injured Because of a Medical Provider’s Negligence?
Successfully pursuing medical malpractice claims requires a thorough investigation, the gathering of evidence, and conferring with medical experts. For help, please call 954-566-9919 and speak with one of the dedicated Florida medical malpractice lawyers at Boone & Davis today.