Basic Requirements for a Medical Malpractice Case
Do you think you or a friend or loved one is the victim of medical malpractice? Believe it or not, medical malpractice in the United States is far too common. While medical professionals are intelligent and well trained, they can still make mistakes – mistakes that can have catastrophic and even deadly consequences.
Partners Geoff Pope and Marc Howard have a great deal of experience trying and winning medical malpractice cases.
In a recent birth defect medical malpractice case, Pope & Howard represented the family of an eight-year-old girl who suffered severe injuries after an obstetrician-gynecologist failed to provide adequate warnings that taking a specific blood pressure medication while pregnant could result in fetal and neonatal abnormalities. Ultimately, the partners’ legal expertise helped the family secure a $12,000,000 jury verdict.
But not every medical mishap is grounds for a malpractice case. You need to prove your doctor acted negligently in order to have a medical malpractice case in Georgia.
Learn about the basic requirements for a medical malpractice case below or contact the team at Pope & Howard today about a potential medical malpractice case.
The First Pair of Legal Elements for Medical Malpractice Cases
The first two legal elements that must be proven are a professional duty owed to the patient by the doctor, and a breach of that duty.
When you go to an appointment, a professional duty is assumed by the doctor. The doctor is expected to properly do job and give an accurate diagnosis for your symptoms. For example, if you went to a doctor’s appointment for a cancer screening, the doctor must properly perform the screening.
The physician is also expected to correctly read and report your results — your life may depend on it. If a doctor misreads your results or performs a faulty screening leading to improper results, it could be considered a breach of that duty.
The Second Pair of Legal Elements for Medical Malpractice Cases
The next legal elements of medical malpractice cases involve proof of injury and damages.
For example, if a doctor makes a mistake during surgery that causes illness or injury, he or she could be held responsible. Mistakes include operating on the wrong body part, leaving foreign materials in the body, or performing surgery without taking the proper safety and sanitary precautions.
Each of these mistakes could cause serious bodily harm as well as cause intense pain and suffering, which brings us to the final element of medical malpractice: proving damages. Keep in mind, damages can be both economic and non-economic.
There are multiple ways that medical malpractice can cause economic strife. One way is if a medical mistake forces you to miss work, thus damaging your earnings. Medical mistakes could also have you paying for a medication you’ve never needed before or attending multiple costly and unwarranted doctor appointments.
Damages could also be assessed by the harm done or the costs of repairing the harm done by a medical professional. Finally, non-economic damages include the pain and suffering that you may have been forced to endure during this entire ordeal.
Get Help From Experienced Medical Malpractice Attorneys in Atlanta, GA
Are you the victim of medical malpractice? Did a doctor make a mistake that negatively impacted your life? If so, you could have a case. The Atlanta medical malpractice lawyers at Pope & Howard will fight for the justice you deserve. Contact our team today for your free consultation.