Every year, hundreds of thousands of people across the United States are affected by careless acts or omissions by medical professionals who are trusted to care for them. Many patients who are adversely affected by their medical providers’ conduct never pursue their cases because they simply don’t know or don’t understand their options. Dedicated medical malpractice lawyer Brian Steed Tatum represents clients throughout South Carolina and North Carolina. He is familiar with this area of the law and wants to help you understand your rights. You can expect the utmost care and professionalism from our entire team.
The Institute of Medicine reports that nearly 100,000 Americans die each year due to medical malpractice, which is a figure higher than those killed in all types of motor vehicle accidents. The Harvard School of Medicine estimates that approximately 18% of patients in hospitals are injured during their time there, and many of these injuries are life-threatening or fatal. According to the American Medical Association, the leading cause of malpractice allegations in 2012 is failure to diagnose.
Medical malpractice is defined as a medical professional’s failure to exercise the skill and care that a medical professional in the same specialty would use in similar circumstances. Thus, a neurosurgeon’s conduct would be compared to what another neurosurgeon’s would do, while a trauma nurse’s actions would be compared to what another trauma nurse would do. Standards and regulations for medical professionals can vary from state to state, so it is important to consult a knowledgeable attorney in your area to assess your options.
Medical malpractice cases are rooted in the theory of negligence, which is the failure to take proper care while doing something. In the case of a medical professional, this can be an act or omission. To prevail against a physician for medical malpractice, a patient must establish that:
To show that the duty of care was breached, the patient must prove that the doctor acted in a manner contrary to the generally accepted way of handling a similar situation. Other doctors likely will be needed as expert witnesses to testify on this issue. If there are no damages that result from the breach, however, there is no basis for a malpractice claim.
The time limit for filing a medical malpractice lawsuit is different from state to state. To ensure you don’t miss your chance to file a lawsuit, it is best to contact an attorney who is knowledgeable in medical malpractice law in your state.
In many medical malpractice cases, the victim may be most interested in getting answers about what went wrong and why. While no amount of money can ease the pain of the harm you may have suffered, the compensation can help with the costs caused by the incident. Depending on the extent of the patient’s injuries, he or she may be able to recover medical bills, prescription and medication expenses, rehabilitation costs, lost wages, lost future income, pain and suffering, and other types of damages.
Preventable medical errors injure and kill hundreds of thousands of Americans every year. When you are a medical patient, you deserve a doctor who listens to you, diagnoses you correctly, and is vigilant about any changes they observe or are informed about. If you or someone you know has been injured or killed because of the carelessness of a medical professional or medical institution, then you should contact legal counsel immediately. Medical negligence attorney Brian Steed Tatum works closely with clients in North Carolina and South Carolina. If you want to learn more about your options, call the Tatum Law Firm at 704-307-4350 or contact us online for a free case evaluation.