Not all bad medical outcomes are medical malpractice. Sometimes, medical treatment does not work as expected or there are no reasonable measures that a healthcare provider can take to treat a patient. These situations are sad and unfortunate, but they are not medical malpractice.
Medical malpractice occurs when:
- A medical provider owes a patient a duty of care. If a healthcare provider-patient relationship exists, then the doctor, nurse, or other healthcare provider owes the patient a duty of care.
- The medical provider breached the duty of care. When a healthcare provider fails to use reasonable care to diagnose or treat a patient, then the healthcare provider may have breached the duty of care.
- The patient was hurt by the medical provider’s unreasonable care. The patient must have suffered an injury because of a healthcare provider’s breach of the duty of care.
- The plaintiff has the legal right to seek damages. A plaintiff may seek damages if they were hurt by medical malpractice, on behalf of their minor child who was hurt by medical malpractice, or in some situations if their loved one died because of medical malpractice.
Common Types of Medical Malpractice
While countless situations could be medical malpractice, some of the more common types of medical malpractice include:
- Misdiagnosis. A misdiagnosis creates two risks. First, the patient doesn’t receive appropriate medical treatment for their condition. Second, the patient may receive medical treatment for a condition that they don’t have, causing unintended side effects.
- Failure to diagnose. The failure to diagnose severe conditions such as heart disease, cancer, or infections can lead to a dangerous delay in medical care.
- Prescription mistakes. If a patient receives too much of a prescription medication, then the side effects may be severe. If a patient receives too little of a prescription medication, then the patient’s condition may not be treated appropriately. Finally, if a patient gets the wrong prescription, then the patient’s condition will not be treated and the patient could suffer significant harm from the wrong medicine.
- Anesthesia errors. The wrong dose of anesthesia can damage internal organs and result in lasting injuries or death.
- Surgical errors. Dangerous surgical mistakes include, but are not limited to, operating on the wrong patient, operating on the wrong part of the patient, or leaving surgical instruments, such as sponges, inside the patient at the end of the operation.
- Birth injuries. If reasonable care is not provided during pregnancy, labor, and delivery, then a child may be born with birth injuries because of medical malpractice. For example, a birth injury may occur if a mother is not appropriately monitored during labor and medical providers fail to notice a dangerous drop in the baby’s heart rate.
- Lack of informed consent. Patients, or their parents/guardians, have the right to understand the reasonably foreseeable benefits and consequences of medical treatment. If a patient was not provided this information before the patient got non-emergency medical care and the patient was injured, then the patient could have a medical malpractice claim.
Contact Top Michigan Medical Malpractice Attorneys Today
Unfortunately, devastating medical malpractice injuries can happen to anyone. If you are hurt, then the Cronin Law Firm is here to help you. We will find out why you were injured and help you get the recovery that you deserve. Contact our Michigan medical malpractice lawyers for a complimentary consultation.