Although there have been incredible technological advancements in the medical field in recent years, many people still suffer injuries due to medical malpractice. In America, physicians have a binding legal duty to provide a certain standard of care to their patients, but sometimes this duty of care is breached. Shockingly, a John Hopkins study reported that medical malpractice is likely the third leading cause of death in the United States.
When physicians fail in their duty to uphold required medical standards, this causes accidental or purposeful harm, which negatively affects the lives of their patients. When a person is injured or suffers a loss due to the negligent actions of medical staff, they are within their rights to sue for a doctor’s medical malpractice. Below, we will discuss the top causes of medical malpractice lawsuits to help individuals determine if they have a case.
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What Exactly Is Medical Malpractice?
Essentially, medical malpractice occurs when a doctor, hospital, or other health care professional causes a patient’s injuries or death through a negligent act or omission. This negligence could include an error in diagnosis, an error in treatment, or an error in the aftercare of a patient. Additionally, to bring a medical malpractice claim against a medical professional or institution, three things must be proven.
- A breach in the medical standard of care.
- The patient’s injuries need to have resulted in injury or loss.
- The patient’s injuries or loss was caused by negligence.
The Top Three Most Common Causes of Medical Malpractice Lawsuits
Now that you know what medical malpractice is and what needs to be proven to initiate a medical malpractice claim. Take a look at the top three common causes. If you believe your injuries are severe enough to warrant a medical malpractice claim, it could be in your best interests to contact a medical malpractice lawyer.
1. Childbirth Injuries
One of the leading causes of medical malpractice lawsuits is childbirth injuries to either an unborn child or a mother. Birth injuries can occur during gestation, labor, and delivery. In the United States, the fatality rate in childbirth is higher than in some third world countries despite technological advancements.
Some common childbirth injuries include a failure to perform a timely c-section, a failure to diagnose and treat a contagious disease or congenital disability, and a failure to follow proper delivery techniques.
2. Medication Errors
Shockingly, approximately 7,000 people die every year because of medication errors in America. Despite most prescriptions now being done digitally, there are still doctors and pharmacists who incorrectly enter information, prescribe the wrong medication, or misinterpret the medication a patient needs.
Some of the more common medication errors include prescribing medication at the wrong dosage, giving inadequate and incorrect instructions surrounding how to take medication, and dispensing the wrong medication.
3. Surgical Errors
Surgical errors are prevalent even though specific medical equipment has decreased the risks involved in most procedures. Medical equipment cannot ensure a surgeon does their job correctly.
Patients can experience surgical errors such as wrong-site incision, post-operative infections, brain damage, and internal bleeding. Additionally, some will receive the wrong operation, while others will have medical equipment left inside their bodies.
Fight for Your Justice
We have only discussed three of the most common causes of medical malpractice lawsuits. Many other causes could qualify as medical malpractice. Unfortunately, medical malpractice lawsuits can be incredibly complex and challenging to navigate. That’s why utilizing the services of an attorney who specializes in this field would be beneficial. An attorney can evaluate if you have a valid medical malpractice claim and guide you through the various legal proceedings.