Health and Wellness

A Short Guide to Filing Medical Malpractice Lawsuits

Medical malpractice happens when a healthcare provider such as a doctor or nurse (or even a healthcare institution like a clinic or hospital) neglects to provide proper treatment to a patient, deviating from the standard of care that is normally provided to similar medical cases.

Medical malpractice lawsuits are essentially cases concerning negligence.

Filing a medical malpractice lawsuit can be a tough hill to climb–negative outcomes from treatment do not always mean that a provider was negligent in giving care to the patient.

Medical malpractice lawsuits are also risky in that those who file a medical malpractice lawsuit have a high likelihood of failure.

With that being said, medical malpractice lawsuits have a higher success rate if ypu prepare for it accordingly.

File a Notice of Intent to Bring a Lawsuit

Before a plaintiff can even file for medical malpractice, most states require plaintiffs to file a Notice of Intent to Bring a Lawsuit or NOI. An NOI allows the defending party and their insurance lawyers to be notified that someone will be pursuing a case of medical malpractice against them.

Hire a Malpractice Attorney

While it is possible to pursue a malpractice lawsuit without the assistance of legal counsel, this can be very tricky. Not all plaintiffs are well-versed in legal jargon and they might have difficulty in navigating the legal landscape.

Having a seasoned malpractice attorney like those found at https://www.seattlemalpracticelawyers.com gives plaintiffs the assistance they need to have the case details reviewed, and file the case before the statute of limitations is reached.

Get Expert Testimony

Medical malpractice attorneys will often recommend getting testimonies from medical experts. This is because getting the opinion of credible subject matter experts can help the judge and jury see the case in the plaintiff’s favor.

Expert medical opinion can be expensive though. Doctors can charge around $500 to review medical records, and might even charge more to appear in court or give their testimony. 

Be Prepared to Fail

Medical malpractice cases are known to have a high failure rate. In the US, around 200,000 patients experience medical malpractice–often leading to fatal consequences.

Despite the huge number of potential cases, only 15% of this number move on to become medical malpractice lawsuits, and less than 20% of these cases result in a happy ending for the plaintiffs.

Because of these statistics, it’s often ideal to hope for the best and prepare for the worst when filing a medical malpractice lawsuit.

Prevent Medical Malpractice

Medical malpractice often happens due to the lack of compatibility and communication between a doctor and a patient. Patients should take a more proactive role in the care that they receive from healthcare providers.

Conducting proper research, documenting symptoms and medications taken, as well as preparing a list of questions that they feel should be asked of their healthcare providers are just some of the steps that can be taken to experience the best care possible.

While it’s important to trust the care being given by the healthcare provider, it’s also important to listen to your own body and intuition. Patients should report any discomfort or pain or seek out a second opinion to confirm that the treatment being provided is the right one.

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