If you are ill or seeking medical attention, you likely believe your doctor should be able to treat your symptoms. And while many physicians are extremely capable, they are human.
Physicians must complete many years of education and supervised training before becoming licensed medical professionals. However, that does not mean they cannot make mistakes. Yet, if you believe your doctor is to blame for your condition, do you know what you might want to think about before you file a medical malpractice lawsuit?
The “Four D’s” of medical malpractice
In some cases, a condition could be too far past the point where treating you would be a commonly-accepted medical practice. Other times, your body could reject treatment.
That said, sometimes a provider might be ill-equipped to handle your situation or be negligent in their treatment. Some of the things you might want to consider in a medical malpractice claim include:
- Damages. What kind of harm did your doctor cause you? This might include lost wages, pain and suffering, medical bills and emotional distress.
- Dereliction. Did your doctor fail to fulfill their obligations to you? Perhaps they operated on the wrong body part, misdiagnosed you, prescribed the incorrect medication or neglected your medical needs.
- Duty. Your doctor should listen to your concerns, treat you with respect and keep your information confidential. And if they are unable to treat your condition, they should refer you to a specialist who can.
- Direct causation. Your medical records may show that your doctor’s dereliction resulted in a negative outcome for your health.
Considering the various complexities involved in the medical field, an attorney experienced in handling medical malpractice claims can help you determine whether you have a case against your provider.
While your physician may try to make a case that your suffering was inevitable regardless of their treatment, a court may be extremely interested in understanding why you want to hold them accountable.