Medical negligence claims - How to win the battle

04th June 2017
By Leigh-Anne in Medical Malpractice
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Being up against a well-known medical practice can be a daunting challenge. It is very easy to feel as though the battle you are fighting can never be won and that you are just wasting your time. While it is true that medical practitioners and institutions have insurance protecting them against possible medical negligence claims, it doesnít mean that they are not going to be held liable when they are guilty of medical malpractice.
Knowing as much as possible about medical malpractice, the nature of medical negligence claims and how they are handledis going to give you a solid foundation to work on, and it is going to give you the confidence to fight for your health when you have been wronged.

What is medical negligence and what are medical negligence claims?

Medical negligence happens when a medical service provider is negligent in the services that they provide and they end up unintentionally harming the patient in their care. It is unintentional because the health care provider has either forgotten an important step in the treatment or something unintentional has interrupted an otherwise everyday procedure. As a result the patient can make medical negligence claims against the practitioner.


Does this sound familiar? You had a simple procedure done at your local doctor. Perhaps you had a skin ailment, such as a mole, removed. The stitched up area became inflamed, a big red ring surrounding the otherwise neat cut is now clearly visible. As a concerned patient, you decide to go back to the practice, only to be told that what is happening is normal. Two days later you notice that the cut is now infected. 6 months down the line you are facing reconstructive surgery because the practice did not clean the area properly.

Does this sound far-fetched? Maybe, but sadly it is something that can happen. And in our country where state health care is many times not equipped with the knowledge or the materials to properly care for patients, and when state health care is often times the system that we turn to for help and assistance when all other options have failed, medical negligence is a reality and medical negligence claims are increasing.

Medical negligence is never the fault of the patient. The patient has put their trust into the medical provider, a provider recognised by various boards and might well also be an upstanding community member. At no point would the patient think that the doctor or nurse would treat them in a negligent way and that the treatment would result in problems.


The result of medical negligence

The outcomes of medical negligence have consequences, sometimes life changing, that go beyond the effects on your health. When you have experienced medical negligence you are going to probably have to take time away from work and you might also need to go to a new medical institution to have the medical negligence reversed or treated.

This negligence can result in permanent disability or even death. Your whole life can be transformed by the effects of negligence, and substandard treatment from a medical practitioner should not mean a life of physical and financial struggle for you. Your medical bills will soon be skyrocketing and this is only going to lead to new complications in your life and new stresses that you donít need. Where are you going to get the money that will be needed to pay off these accounts? Will this one act of medical negligence result in your financial ruin? Even if you are on a medical aid, it can only take you so far before your funds become depleted.

But the negligence does not have to become some kind of never ending nightmare. When you have a case of such negligence you will be able to fight for compensation in a court with the assistance of experienced and skilled medical negligence attorneys

Some medical negligence claims in are truly terrifying and they have drawn the attention of both the medical and legal community. Stories of the wrong leg being amputated, the wrong organs being removed and incorrect medication causing life-threatening complications have all resulted in massive medical negligence claims.
The fine details of medical negligence claims
Just because you are unhappy with a service which you have received does not mean that the doctor was negligent. In order for you to have a case of medical malpractice, you will actually have to prove that you have suffered an injury that is directly related to the treatment that you received.
Usually consulting attorneys who specialises in the medical malpractice is the way to go. They will be able to evaluate the case and be able to tell you if you have a legal claim. They will also have a medical person on hand to assist them in determining your case.
The common types of medical malpractice
1. Failure in diagnosing: this happens when a practitioner fails to make a diagnosis that would have easily been made by a competent doctor, and if the alternative diagnosis by a competent person would have resulted in a better outcome for the patient.
2. Incompetent treatment: if the doctor treats the patient in a way that a competent doctor would not have treated the patient and the patient has suffered, as a result, then negligence might be the cause. This type of negligence can also be at fault if a patient has received the correct treatment, but the way in which it has been given was incorrect and has resulted in injury.
3. No warning of risks: there are always risks involved in the treatment of patients. A good doctor is going to warn you about the risks and allow you to choose whether or not to continue treatment. When a doctor doesnít warn you and rather goes ahead with treatment, or if a doctor doesnít warn you correctly, then you will have a case against them should something that you should have been warned about go wrong.
Medical malpractice can happen to even the most careful and diligent patient and should it happen to you, you do not have to struggle with the consequences on your own. You have the law on your side and by using it right you will be able to get the treatment, support and the compensation that you deserve.
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