As we go on with our lives, we may need to undergo a medical surgery at some point. Thanks to advanced technology, we can count on our competent doctors and other healthcare professionals most of the time. In some cases, however, medical procedures and surgeries don’t go as intended. Worse, you as the patient experience something adverse due to medical malpractice or negligence.
If you suspect that medical malpractice exists, you can do things to hold your doctor accountable. Before anything else, proving that such has occurred is necessary. Though medical malpractice is a vast topic, what you need to understand is simple: harm, injury, or even death happened as a result of a negligent act or omission of a healthcare provider.
Medical malpractice can occur not only during surgeries but also during diagnosis, other treatment procedures, health management, and aftercare. Once medical malpractice has been established, the battle to hold the professional accountable begins. Here, we will be providing the steps that you need to consider if you’ve been a victim of such unfortunate event.
Collect information about the care you’ve received
The work begins with gathering information about your care. Not only is it essential to accumulate as much data as possible, but it is also necessary to have a comprehensive and precise timeline of events.
Obtain a copy of your medical record
Although it seems daunting to many, the first step is requesting a copy of your medical chart. We say daunting because often, people tend to be shy about asking them as they feel like they’re asking for a huge favor from the hospital personnel. There’s also the issue that maybe your doctor will be offended. Always keep in mind you have the right to access those records; after all, it’s your information.
Document your experience
You should take notes of your experience – from who handled a certain procedure to the exact procedure done or prescribed. While you may not be able to remember all the processes and how they were done, you can try to review the records obtained from the facility and recall if they were indeed what happened. Having a complete record of the treatment received will significantly help an expert evaluate your claim and prove it should you opt to pursue a legal suit.
Interview your caregivers
You should get as much information about the care you received – from diagnosis to treatment to aftercare. This means you’ll need to be dealing with not only with one or two healthcare providers but multiple, which include your doctor/s, nurses, specialists, lab technicians, and other facilities where you obtained care. Ask them questions, and get a second opinion. While doing so, stay calm and don’t harass the medical staff. When dealing with your caregivers, don’t in any way sign anything to resolve the situation as this may affect the ability to claim damage in the future.
Ask for hospital investigation
If your injury is severe, you can consider requesting a hospital investigation. Remember that most hospitals don’t usually publicize the result of the investigation, so you might not use it for your benefit during a suit. The only good thing is that the facility will become aware of the malpractice and an explanation will most likely be communicated to you.
Consult a medical malpractice expert
Consulting an attorney specializing in medical malpractice will prove to be beneficial whether you’d want to file a legal case or not. He or she can help you investigate the matter, determine if a claim is possible, and advise you of the statute of limitations and other details that may be very legally technical. If malpractice is proven in court, you as the victim may get compensation for the following:
- Medical bills
- Lost wages, if you’re working
- Pain and suffering from the injury
- Future lost wages and earnings
- Future medical expenses
Medical malpractice laws are much more complex than we think, and they vary from one country or state to another, which only an expert can explain and convey in a way non-legal persons understand. A lawyer can also guide you on which strategy applies most to your case and help you secure testimonies from different medical experts.
Medical malpractice means that what you received did not meet the standards of medical care, so the opinions of such experts are needed and may be beneficial for your case.
Further, your attorney can help you understand the impact of your actions on your medical injury. Getting the service of a medical malpractice lawyer will not only ease your legal worries, but also proves to be of emotional support along with your family and friends as pursuing a suit can be physically, psychologically, and emotionally draining.
Getting sick and going through surgery or any other medical treatment is not a pleasant experience; more so if you learned that the procedure was not as successful as you hoped it would be. Suffering from pain or injury that the treatment caused adds to the disappointment that you may feel.
If you suspect or are sure to have been a victim of medical malpractice and want to file a legal case, it’s important to click here to consider these steps to ensure recovery for damages and to seek legal aid from experienced personal injury attorneys. After all, you didn’t sign up for this misfortune.