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How Do I Know If My Doctor Was Negligent?

In this country, an alarming 80,000 deaths a year can be attributed to medical mistakes. In addition, countless others suffer permanent injury. Unfortunately, many of these victims are unaware of their legal rights. This post answers a few commonly asked questions.

What Is Medical Malpractice?

Medical malpractice is generally defined as a negligent act or omission by a doctor or other medical professional resulting in damage or harm to a patient. Common types of malpractice include birth injuries related to negligence during delivery or mistakes in prenatal care; misdiagnosis or delayed diagnosis of such conditions as cancer, heart disease, or stroke; medication errors; and surgical negligence including improper positioning of a patient on an operating table, failure to monitor, improper use of anesthetic agents, or wrong site surgery leading to injury or death.

How Do I Prove the Doctor Was Negligent?

To establish medical negligence, you must be able to prove:

  • The existence of a duty owed by the health care professional to the plaintiff
  • A deviation from the applicable standard of care by the heath care professional, which is deemed a breach of the duty owed to the patient. The standards of practice and care are really safety rules designed to protect the safety and health of patients.
  • A causal relationship between the health care professionals deviation from the standard of care and the patient’s injury.
  • Injury to the patient.

Will I Be Compensated?

Medical malpractice laws are designed to protect patients’ rights to pursue compensation if they are injured as a result of negligence. Victims of medical malpractice may be entitled to compensation for lost income, the cost of health and personal care, and other damages related to their injuries.

If you or someone you love has suffered from a medical error, don’t hesitate to contact a San Diego medical malpractice attorney at the Law Offices of Robert Vaage for a free consultation.