When is a medical mistake actually malpractice?

Humans make mistakes, and since medical professionals are humans, they may do so as well. However, medical errors may prove life-threatening to you or someone you love.

Some errors are innocent oversights, while others rise to malpractice. How can you tell the difference? Find out more about what sets medical malpractice apart.

The duty of care

Medical professionals have to uphold a standard of care for patients. This means that they need to adhere to their educational resources and their ethical duties to diagnose and care for patients. When a doctor or facility does not comply with this duty of care, the action or inaction may result in injury or illness.

The act is negligent

The doctor or facility must ignore the duty to you and your care for one reason or another. This negligent act may happen in many ways, including:

  • Ignoring symptoms
  • Failing to diagnose or misdiagnosing
  • Delaying treatment
  • Committing a preventable error

Negligence is what sets an innocent mistake apart from malpractice.

The result is an injury or illness

When you go to the doctor or hospital for treatment, you expect to get better. However, if someone’s negligent act makes you worse, or you wind up with another condition that ties back to the reckless action, you may find yourself spending time and money dealing with it. The cost associated with malpractice may rise before you get relief, and as such, you may need to move for recovery of financial damages.

When a medical professional or facility makes a preventable mistake, you may have the right to get paid back for the money you lost. Medical malpractice claims may aid in getting your life back on track after an unfortunate act of malpractice.

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