Rockville Medical Malpractice Lawyer
Medical malpractice can cause devastating injuries and can lead to life-threatening illnesses, such as cancer, advancing undiagnosed. Although we would like to believe that these cases are rare, medical errors are the third-leading cause of death in the United States, Johns Hopkins Medicine has reported.
There are many different types of medical malpractice. A misdiagnosis or delayed diagnosis can result in a person’s illness or injury not being identified and treated promptly. In other cases, a doctor may diagnose a condition properly but fail to provide adequate treatment. Surgical errors, birth injuries, and anesthesia errors are just a few other types of medical malpractice.
If you have suffered damages due to a healthcare provider’s negligence, it is important that you speak to a Rockville, Maryland, medical malpractice lawyer as soon as possible. The Law Offices of Dr. Michael M. Wilson, M.D., J.D. & Associates is a unique medical malpractice law firm in that our principal attorney, Michael Wilson, is both a lawyer and a physician. With legal and medical degrees from Georgetown University, he provides a level of knowledge and advocacy that allow you to feel confident that you case is in good hands.
Contact our law firm today for a free consultation.
What Is Medical Malpractice?
Medical malpractice occurs when a doctor or other healthcare worker does not provide the accepted standard of care to their patients. Healthcare workers owe their patients the highest duty of care because they have the patient’s health and safety in their hands. The duty of care provided is typically established by determining whether another healthcare worker in the same field would have provided the same treatment or if they would have conducted themselves in the same way.
It is important to understand the difference between medical malpractice and an unsuccessful treatment. There are many instances in which doctors and healthcare workers provide treatment on a trial-and-error basis. Sometimes a treatment may be appropriate for an injury or illness, but it simply does not work for a particular patient. This is not necessarily medical malpractice.
However, if a doctor recommended a course of treatment that was not appropriate for a certain patient and that patient became harmed as a result, that could constitute medical malpractice. In this scenario, the doctor would have displayed negligence, which is essential in medical malpractice cases.
To learn whether you have a case, contact our Rockville medical malpractice attorney now.
Is There a Difference Between Medical Negligence and Medical Malpractice?
The simple answer is no. In a medical malpractice claim, you will need to show that the doctor or healthcare provider was negligent. This means you must show that:
- The medical professional had a duty to you.
- The healthcare provider did not provide the standard of care that other professionals would have provided.
- You suffered harm as a direct result.
Our medical malpractice attorney in Rockville, Maryland, can evaluate the specific details of your case and explain your options for moving forward if negligence has occurred.
What Are Different Types of Medical Malpractice?
Medical malpractice can occur in a variety of different ways. The most common types of medical malpractice include:
- Misdiagnosis: Misdiagnosis is one of the most common forms of medical malpractice. Misdiagnosis occurs when a doctor examines a patient but makes an incorrect diagnosis. When this happens, patients do not receive the treatment they need and may even receive unnecessary treatments that cause them harm.
- Delayed diagnosis: When doctors fail to diagnose a patient’s condition accurately and promptly, patients do not receive the treatment they need when they need it. This can cause a condition to become much worse, resulting in them getting much sicker.
- Failure to treat: There are instances in which a doctor accurately and promptly diagnoses a condition but fails to recommend proper treatment.
- Surgical errors: These mistakes can include operating on the wrong body part, performing surgery that is not necessary, using non-sterile equipment, or leaving medical equipment in a body cavity. All of these result in great harm to patients.
- Birth injury: Sometimes, medical malpractice occurs before someone is even born, or during their birth. Cerebral palsy, Erb’s palsy, and brachial plexus injuries are just a few types of birth injuries that can result from medical malpractice.
If you believe you have been a victim of medical malpractice, you must speak to a qualified attorney as soon as possible to ensure you understand your legal rights.
How Do You Prove Medical Malpractice?
In order to successfully claim compensation for medical malpractice, you must prove that a doctor or other healthcare worker was negligent. To do this, you must provide evidence to substantiate your claim. This evidence can include medical records, treatment records, and expert testimony. Essentially, you need to demonstrate that other healthcare providers in the same field would have acted differently under similar circumstances.
In addition, you will need to provide extensive evidence documenting the damages you have suffered, including medical bills and receipts, pay stubs to show lost wages, and evidence of how your quality of life has been affected.
What Types of Medical Malpractice Damages Can You Seek?
There are a number of different types of damages, or compensation, you can seek in a medical malpractice claim. Some of the most common include:
- Current and future medical expenses
- Lost income if you cannot return to work while you recover
- Loss of earning capacity if you cannot return to the same line of work you once performed
- Loss of enjoyment of life
- Pain and suffering
- Emotional anguish
In rare cases, punitive damages may also be awarded. These are only applicable when a healthcare provider has shown gross negligence.
How Much Time Do You Have to File a Medical Malpractice Claim?
Maryland, like all other states, has a statute of limitations on medical malpractice claims. This is the time limit you have to file a claim. In Maryland, this time limit is five years from the date the injury occurred, or three years from the date the injury was discovered, whichever is earlier. If you do not file your claim within this time, you will likely forfeit your right to compensation.
Get Help from a Rockville Medical Malpractice Attorney Today
No one should have to suffer due to a medical provider’s negligence. If you have suffered from a medical error, call our Maryland medical malpractice attorney at The Law Offices of Dr. Michael M. Wilson, M.D., J.D. & Associates today. The consultation is free.