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Who could be held accountable for medical malpractice injury?

Doctors, hospitals and related third-parties in Pittsburgh are tasked with the responsibility of caring for our well-being, and treating or preventing our injuries and illnesses. These medical professionals and facilities owe a duty of care to their patients. While not all medical issues can be cured or completely remedied, a level of care and responsibility is expected of these parties. An inability to perform at a certain level can cause unnecessary injury to the patient.

Many people envision medical malpractice occurring as an injury or mistake that took place during surgery. While this can, and has occurred, there are many other ways a medical malpractice issue could originate. There could be a mistake made at any step of the medical process including diagnosis, treatment or illness management. Beyond the liability of doctor and hospital, federal or state agencies sometimes run or are responsible for the on-goings of medical decisions and could also potentially be held accountable for medical malpractice injury.

It’s important to note that an inability to treat or cure a person’s illness or injury is not necessarily grounds for a medical malpractice claim. A good measuring stick for gauging if an injury is due to medical malpractice is if a similar doctor or care facility in that same situation would have acted as the alleged negligent party did. Also, the corresponding injuries must be traceable to that exact medical decision. For example, if a patient was misdiagnosed and the mistreatment and lack of correct treatment resulted in serious injuries and another medical professional would have made a different and consented decision among professionals, this may be candidate for a medical malpractice suit.

Assessing the validity of your own or a loved one’s medical malpractice claim alone can, understandably, feel overwhelming. Wellness is the number one priority, so stabilizing one’s health may and should come first. When the injured person or family is feeling up to it, that’s when they should seek compensation. However, do not delay too long, as there is a time limit as to when these lawsuits can be brought after injury.

Source: FindLaw, “Medical malpractice – In Depth,” Accessed July 3, 2017