Do you know what the third leading cause of death is in the United States? According to the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA), the answer is medical negligence.
In fact, over $3 billion is paid out each year to settle medical malpractice claims. Stunningly, a medical malpractice payout takes place every 43 seconds on average.
In the event that you or a loved one is victim to medical negligence, there are experienced professionals ready to help.
Read on to learn what a New York medical malpractice attorney can do for you!
What Is Medical Malpractice?
Before we go into detail, it’s important to understand precisely what medical malpractice is.
The American Board of Professional Liability Attorneys (ABPLA) defines medical malpractice as a patient injury caused by negligence or omission. Those responsible for medical malpractice are hospitals, doctors, or any other healthcare professionals.
There are a few characteristics that must be present for medical malpractice. In order to have a legal case, the following three scenarios must exist.
The first is a failure to meet medical care standards. It’s expected that healthcare professionals deliver services in accordance with industry-wide standards. If they fail to meet that standard, your medical malpractice lawyer can establish the presence of negligence.
In addition to violating medical standards, there must be proof that the negligent care resulted in an injury.
Unexpected and unfavorable results occur every day in the medical field. No court would hold a doctor or hospital liable merely for a negative outcome.
Instead, the court must see evidence that the negligence caused the injury.
Lastly, the injury suffered due to negligence must result in damages. If the aftermath of the injury is not significant, it likely will not be worth pursuing an expensive and time-consuming medical malpractice lawsuit.
What Are Some Examples of Medical Malpractice?
There really is no limit to medical malpractice examples. Negligence can come in many different shapes and forms.
There are some examples that commonly result in medical malpractice litigation. These examples include misdiagnosis or a premature discharge.
A doctor or hospital may be negligent if they do not order the proper testing. As a result, the correct diagnosis is not made.
On the surgical end, negligence may be the result of an unnecessary surgery or an error by the surgeon.
Finally, prescription or consumption of an improper medication or an incorrect dosage is another example of negligence.
What Are the Worst Outcomes of Medical Malpractice?
These examples of medical malpractice can lead to serious consequences for patients. Obviously, the worst case scenario is death.
Unfortunately, 31% of all medical malpractice payouts are to compensate families for wrongful death.
Another 35% of payouts are for major permanent injury. Some victims also suffer from brain damage or need lifelong care.
How Do Medical Professionals and Health Insurers Respond to Malpractice?
This is an important question, as it may weigh on your decision to move forward with a medical malpractice lawsuit.
In some cases, health care providers may inform the patient of negligent care. The motives behind this are straightforward.
Medical professionals have an obligation to be honest about the care that they give. In addition, they prefer to avoid costly medical malpractice litigation.
What Will a Health Care Provider Offer You to Avoid a Lawsuit?
Upon admission or discovery of negligence, healthcare providers are eager to simply waive the patient’s cost responsibility.
In this situation, the provider receives payment from the insurer and waives the patient’s remaining balance. This is the best case scenario for the provider because they received a partial payment.
In other more serious situations, the health care provider may offer a settlement.
You should be hesitant to agree to any settlement offer without legal representation. The health care provider is likely making this offer as a preemptive tactic to limit future monetary damages.
If you receive an admission of fault letter or a settlement offer, do not hesitate to contact a New York medical malpractice attorney for a consultation.
Who are the Victims of Medical Malpractice?
Sadly, anyone can become affected by medical malpractice. Nearly half a billion dollars are spent every year to settle malpractice lawsuits for children 19 years and younger.
The most affected age group is 50-59 years old. The vast majority of negligence claims are initiated by people in the latter half of their life.
In 2017, more females were victims of medical malpractice than men, at a rate of 53-47%.
How Prevalent Is Medical Malpractice in the State of New York?
Medical malpractice is extremely prevalent in the state of New York.
Health care providers paid out nearly $701 million to settle medical malpractice claims in a single year. This figure made New York the highest contributor in the nation.
Adjusted for population, New York has the second highest payout rate in the United States, only behind New Hampshire.
Many states experienced a decline in medical malpractice payouts since 2015. New York’s payouts increased over that time.
For this reason, many are turning to a New York medical malpractice attorney for help.
What Can a New York Medical Malpractice Attorney Do for You?
Medical malpractice attorneys are ready to fight for you. They will closely review medical history and the circumstances of the injury sustained.
Your attorney will advise you on whether there is a cost benefit to pursuing medical malpractice litigation. In addition, they can review any settlement offers or admission of fault letters submitted by the medical provider.
In many cases, a medical malpractice attorney will help win 7-figure settlements for their clients. Most importantly, your attorney will help you obtain justice in the event of a wrongful death or permanent injury.
Wrapping It Up
Medical malpractice is commonplace in the state of New York. Any gender or age group can be adversely affected by negligence at a hospital or doctor’s office.
You may be a victim of medical malpractice if you were prematurely discharged from a hospital or something went wrong during surgery. There is a myriad of other negative outcomes due to medical malpractice.
If you are in need of a New York medical malpractice attorney, please do not hesitate to contact us for assistance.