We trust health care professionals to provide our families with the highest level of care. The term “health care professional” legally could encompass medical doctors, hospitals, dentists, pharmacists, nurses, optometrists, podiatrists, chiropractors, physical therapists, clinical psychologists, nursing homes, and health maintenance organizations. When something goes wrong with your or a family member’s care, the claim can be burdensome on your family. Contact a Medical Malpractice Lawyer Charlottesville VA at MartinWren, P.C. for help in your time of need.
medical malpractice and the doctrine of informed consent
Like many personal injury claims, medical malpractice claims are usually negligence actions. In negligence claims, the plaintiff must establish duty, breach of duty, causation, and damages (click the links to read more about each aspect of a negligence action).
A medical malpractice claim is a little different, however, as a claim exists if a doctor deviates from the standard of care and causes an injury as a result. The standard of care is the way that a reasonable doctor or healthcare provider would act under a set of circumstances.
One specific type of medical malpractice claim is lack of informed consent. The doctrine of informed consent mandates that health care professionals must inform patients of the risks, alternatives, and the expected course of treatment. If a patient can prove that he or she was not informed of the risk of treatment and sustained an injury from the risk, this could be a medical malpractice case in Virginia.
In order for a lack of informed consent medical malpractice claim to be actionable, there must be proof that the lack of disclosure of risks, alternative treatments, or plan for treatment was the proximate cause of the injury sustained. It must be shown that if the patient had been informed of the risks, the injury would not have occurred.
other types of malpractice suits
In addition to failure to inform the patient, there are several other negligent behaviors that can result in a medical malpractice claim. These can include a failure to diagnose, leaving an object in a patient’s body, or medication errors that cause harm.
Misdiagnosing a patient will not automatically result in a label of negligence. A medical professional acting appropriately by adequately examining a patient in a timely manner will not be required to pay damages simply because a diagnosis was incorrect. The same is true for treatments that fail to cure a patient. Simply because the treatment did not result in a cure does not mean the medical professional was negligent. Even if a treatment is harmful to a patient, if the medical professional was acting in a way that was up to the standard of care, the patient may not recover damages.
However, if your medical malpractice lawyer can help you establish that the level of care was not up to standards and the violation of this standard resulted in injury to you or a loved one, you could be able to recover damages for your injury. Medical malpractice carries significant risk of substantial injuries or death, so this is not an area of law to be treated with anything less than premium care.
let us help you seek answers
The time following a medical malpractice injury can be a difficult and confusing time for you and your loved ones. If you believe you are the victim of medical malpractice, let the Virginia Medical Malpractice Lawyers at MartinWren, P.C. assist you and your family. Contact Kirk D. Becchi today at (434) 817-3100 for a free consultation.