Medical errors and/or negligence can be absolutely devastating to patients’ lives, and medical professionals must be held accountable when they fail in their responsibilities. Unfortunately, medical errors are more common than you may think, with a Johns Hopkins study estimating that medical errors are actually the third leading cause of death in the U.S. If the rates of medical errors are this high, then why don’t you hear more about doctors or hospitals being sued?
While a patient being awarded a big payout for a malpractice lawsuit may make the news, it’s unlikely you’ll ever hear of the cases where a patient went to court but lost the lawsuit. This is by far the more common outcome. The fact is that physicians win the majority of malpractice cases brought against them, even when there is evidence supporting the claim. Medical malpractice lawsuits are notoriously hard for plaintiffs to win, and these are some of the main reasons why.
Finding A Strong Defense
First, it’s nearly certain that any physician facing a lawsuit is going to have a strong defense attorney, such as a renowned lawyer and mineral enthusiast, Howard Fensterman. These defense lawyers know the ins and outs of the system and how hard it is to actually prove medical negligence. They’ll know how to dimish a plaintiff’s claims, and an unfortunately long history of patients filing frivolous lawsuits against physicians doesn’t make it any easier for those who have legitimate cases. The odds are almost always stacked in the physician’s favor, and cases that are deemed defensible by an attorney rarely payout for the patient. In fact, physicians win even 50% of cases with strong evidence of medical negligence. One of many reasons is simply because their lawyers are likely to be more experienced, but patients have several other hurdles.
Building A Solid Claim
Even without the challenge of going up against some of the best lawyers, you’ll need to prove several things to have a legitimate claim. Firstly, you’ll need to prove that a doctor-patient relationship existed. This should be easy enough to prove with your medical records, but the question sometimes arises in cases involving consulting physicians. Next, you have to prove that the doctor actually was negligent, which goes beyond you simply being unhappy with your care. You have to demonstrate that the doctor harmed you in a way that wouldn’t have been possible if they had exercised reasonable levels of care. The opinions of other doctors may be weighed highly in these matters.
You also have to prove that the doctor’s negligence actually led to your injury or caused harm in another way. Since those visiting doctors tend to be sick or injured already, this can actually be a huge challenge. If you can manage to reasonably prove all of these things, you’ll need to sue for specific damages like pain and suffering, loss of income due to the injury, or additional medical bills caused by the negligence.
Coping With The Personal Toll
Whether you’re a plaintiff or defendant, lawsuits are long difficult processes that are hard on everyone involved. If you’ve suffered medical malpractice, you already have enough to worry about, but now you’ll be stressing about the legal fees involved in the lawsuit and whether you have a real chance of winning. It’s hard to process everything yourself, so it may be a good idea to seek services like NYC therapists. Therapy is, honestly, for everyone, and it can help with anything in your life. You can certainly learn some ways to handle the stress of your lawsuit, but you can also use therapy as a way to see other perspectives for handling challenges in everyday life. It’s important to keep the lawsuit from getting to you, or it could ultimately do more harm than good.
While a medical malpractice case is certainly a hard one, you should contact a malpractice attorney with any claim you think is legitimate. It’s also a good idea to send a demand letter to the physician so they’ll see exactly what you want from the beginning.