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What To Know In A Medical Malpractice Case

Medical malpractice is an epidemic in the U.S. Historically, medical malpractice laws were designed to accomplish certain specific social objectives, including addressing poor quality care, fairly compensating patients for injuries resulting from negligence, and imposing justice in a manner that would make future occurrences less likely.

Medical malpractice is a legal cause of action that occurs when a health care provider deviates from standards in his or her profession, thereby causing injury to a patient. People have the right to sue their health care providers for medical malpractice and, at Gage Mathers, we know how to approach their cases.

Medical malpractice claims involve the following elements:

The Burden Of Proof

Arizona’s lawmakers raised the difficulty of proving fault in medical malpractice cases involving emergency room care and emergency medical services. These obstacles may limit your right to sue, limit your right to obtain full and fair compensation, and limit your right to the truth about what happened to you. However, we know how to scour the case for every bit of evidence and make sure your story is told.

Statute Of Limitations

In Arizona, a medical malpractice lawsuit must be filed within two years of the incident, or within two years of when the person knows or should have known that negligence occurred. This is called the “statute of limitations.” If you do not file the lawsuit within the allowed time, the court will dismiss the case regardless of the facts.

However, in some instances, the statute of limitations is significantly shorter. If the lawsuit involves a public entity or a public employee of one, then a Notice of Claim must be served on the appropriate entity(-ies) within 180 days after the negligence.

The Requirements Of A Medical Malpractice Claim

You must prove three things:

  • The care provider was negligent
  • Their actions or lack of actions caused your injury
  • Your various damages are a result of the incident

Negligence

Doctors and other health care providers have a duty to their patients: to provide care and treatment that complies with the appropriate standard of care and skill. If the health care provider fails to do this, they are acting negligently.

Causation

Medical negligence becomes medical malpractice when the doctor’s treatment causes injury to the patient. The key is proving the act is linked to the injury or death. There are many ways that health care providers can negligently cause injuries. For instance:

  • Misdiagnosis or failure to diagnose
  • Surgical errors, including unnecessary or incorrect surgery
  • Surgical errors, including leaving things inside the patient’s body after surgery
  • Premature discharge
  • Failure to order appropriate tests or to act on results
  • Failure to follow up
  • Medication errors

Damages

Finally, you must prove the injury led to specific damages. Even if it is clear that the health care provider was negligent, you cannot sue for malpractice if you did not suffer any harm. Collectable damages may include:

  • Physical pain
  • Disability
  • Mental anguish and suffering
  • Past and future medical bills
  • Lost wages and earning capacity

Start Your Case Today – Give Us A Call

Medical malpractice cases rarely, if ever, resolve without hiring a lawyer. Even after hiring a lawyer, negligent doctors are reluctant to admit their mistakes. We are well-prepared to pursue justice for your loss or injury. Call 602-857-9161 or contact us via email to discuss your case.