Medical Malpractice Attorney in Seattle
Medical Malpractice & Negligence
When we go to the hospital or our doctor's office for an ailment, we expect to receive a proper diagnosis and a plan for treatment – as we should. We trust our doctors and nurses to be focused and professional in providing health care. There are times when doctors and medical professionals make mistakes during diagnosis, treatment or surgery. In some cases, doctors or nurses make such serious errors that patients suffer harm and require additional medical treatment.
Being misdiagnosed or improperly treated can have long-lasting negative consequences. A medical error can take a severe emotional and financial toll on patients and their family members. Some medical mistakes even cause wrongful death. If you or a loved one has been the victim of medical negligence, the dedicated Seattle medical malpractice attorneys at Hardwick & Pendergast, P.S. can help you better understand your legal rights and options. We can be reached at (888) 228-3860.
What is Medical Malpractice?
If you are the victim of a mistake made by a doctor or other health care professional, you may be able to pursue compensation for your losses by filing a medical malpractice claim in Washington. However, since plaintiffs in personal injury cases have the burden of proof, you must be able to show that the medical professional made a mistake and that you suffered harm as a direct consequence of that mistake.
Medical malpractice happens whenever a doctor does something or fails to act, causing an injury or other harm to the patient. All medical professionals must provide a certain standard of care to their patients. This means that they must follow a generally accepted method used by other medical professionals in similar circumstances. When doctors or other medical professionals fail to provide that standard of care, they can be held accountable for injuries and harm they cause to patients.
Types of Medical Malpractice
There are a vast number of situations that can lead to a medical malpractice claim. Here are some of the most common types of cases that lead to medical malpractice claims:
- Failure to Diagnose - The patient may have a viable medical malpractice claim if a doctor failed to diagnose his or her condition, misdiagnosed the condition or diagnosed it too late. Misdiagnosis or failure to diagnose prevents patients from getting the treatment and care they need in a timely manner.
- Failure to Monitor - Medicine has evolved to include the use of technology to assist in providing healthcare. Doctors and nurses are trusted to review, understand, and communicate regarding the information obtained about a patient through imaging, heart monitoring, and other technologies.
- Improper Treatment - If a doctor fails to treat the patient in a manner in which another competent doctor would, the patient could have a claim. The patient may also sue for medical malpractice if the doctor diagnoses the condition properly and selects the proper course of treatment, but executes it improperly.
- Failure to Warn - Doctors have a duty and an obligation to warn patients about the known risks of a procedure or treatment. This is called the duty of informed consent.
How to Prove Medical Malpractice in Washington
Most patients will not be able to determine if a medial mistake was made without an experienced medical negligence attorney reviewing medical records. Health care providers chart data in specific ways which can be difficult to decipher.
In order to prove that medical negligence or medical malpractice occurred, a plaintiff must first show that a doctor-patient relationship existed. This means that you retained the doctor and the doctor agreed to directly treat you. The plaintiff must then prove that the doctor or medical professional was negligent. For example, a patient cannot sue because he or she is unhappy with the results.
The doctor must have been negligent for the patient to sue for medical malpractice. The patient must also be able to show that the doctor's actions or lack of actions caused harm. The plaintiff must then prove that the injury led to specific damages. The patient cannot sue if no harm was suffered even if the doctor or medical professional committed an error or was negligent. Some of the damages patients can sue for include medical bills, lost income, loss of earning capacity, pain and suffering and mental anguish.
Contact an Understanding Seattle Medical Malpractice Lawyer
Proving a medical malpractice case can be challenging and complex. The experienced Seattle medical malpractice lawyers at Hardwick & Pendergast, P.S. have access to renowned experts in the medical field who can testify on your behalf to help prove your case. We can help prove negligence and help you get the compensation you need and rightfully deserve. Call us at (888) 228-3860 for a free consultation and comprehensive case evaluation.
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