MEDICAL MALPRACTICE IS SERIOUS- CHOOSE YOUR MALPRACTICE LAWYER WISELY
Instances of medical malpractice seem to be a regular occurrence in the news, compounding pain and suffering with botched procedures or incorrect diagnoses that have lasting negative consequences for individuals and their families. If you are a victim of medical malpractice, having a dedicated medical malpractice attorney on your side with both the legal experience and financial resources required to properly investigate your case is critical.
The Miami medical malpractice lawyers at Neufeld, Kleinberg & Pinkiert, PA, bring more than 90 combined years of experience to your case. In-depth knowledge of case histories, interpreting hospital records, and health care industry law has helped us win successful judgments for countless clients. We are confident in our ability to guide clients through even the most complex medical malpractice case. Call today for a free consultation, and learn how our law firm can help you. As you explore your legal options, take a
look at the following information about medical malpractice in Miami.
WHAT IS THE DEFINITION OF MEDICAL MALPRACTICE?
You’ve likely seen medical malpractice surface on procedural detective shows—but do you know what the legal definition entails? In short, medical malpractice involves a healthcare professional, such as a nurse or surgeon, behaving negligently. When their performance differs from the set standard of their profession, harm comes to their patient, and they have committed medical malpractice. If that negligence can be isolated and proven, you may be able to receive compensation for your medical bills, as well as any pain and suffering you may have experienced.
Medical malpractice can ultimately refer to any number of situations, including:
- Surgical errors
- Failure to diagnose
- Prescription and medication errors
- Defective medical equipment
- Improperly managing recovery periods
- Chiropractic malpractice
It is not uncommon for some firms to be wary of certain aspects of personal injury. Essentially, a medical malpractice case requires an attorney to think like a doctor. Often, these types of cases require expert witnesses to be brought in and examined. Our experience in this field, and our exposure to trusted experts, allows us to carefully investigate a patient’s history through doctor’s notes, medical histories, medicines prescribed, diagnostic tests, and X-ray/MRI results.
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WHAT CONSTITUTES MEDICAL MALPRACTICE IN FLORIDA?
A medical error does not necessarily mean that you have a medical malpractice claim on your hands. Mistakes do happen, and they may not always be the result of negligence. For example, if a doctor had no reasonable way of knowing that you would have a severe negative reaction to a drug, you won’t get very fair with a medical malpractice claim.
In order to have a valid medical malpractice case, you must be able to prove the following:
- A duty of care was owed to the patient
- That duty was breached, whether through negligence or another deviation from the standard of care
- The breach of duty caused injury
- As a result, damages were incurred
An experienced Miami medical malpractice lawyer can analyze your experience and help you determine whether or not those conditions were met. If all four elements were present, then you will be able to pursue legal action.
COMMON TYPES OF MEDICAL MALPRACTICE
One key category of medical malpractice litigation is misdiagnosis. When a medical care provider causes undue harm to a patient due to a wrong or missed diagnosis, that patient needs an experienced misdiagnosis personal injury lawyer to walk them through common pitfalls. It is fair for any patient to presume that their doctor or other medical care provider takes every precaution necessary to offer an accurate diagnosis.
The dangers of a misdiagnosis are many. And, whether the wrong treatment plan causes direct harm to the patient or simply delays the appropriate treatment, misdiagnosis can be costly. Depending on the condition in question, a misdiagnosis could lead to serious injury or even death. Victims of misdiagnosis injuries may end up with lasting physical consequences and medical bills, not to mention pain and suffering. Liable parties should be held accountable for these damages.
Commonly Misdiagnosed Conditions
With over 90 years of combined experience,Neufeld, Kleinberg & Pinkiert, PA personal injury lawyers are uniquely equipped to represent you. Over the years, we have seen a number of misdiagnosis cases surrounding conditions such as:
- Aortic dissection
- Breast cancer
- Cervical cancer
- Colorectal cancer
- Deep vein thrombosis
- Heart attack
- Lung cancer
- Malignant tumor (diagnosed as benign)
- Misread mammograms
- Post-surgery bleeding
- Prostate cancer
- Pulmonary embolism
- Testicular cancer
Failure to Diagnose and Delayed Diagnosis
No matter the condition, failure to diagnose and delayed diagnosis can be detrimental to a patient. When those delays and failures have to do with a cancer diagnosis, for example, the mistakes can be deadly. The earlier and more accurately cancer is detected, the better the chances are for successful treatment.
If a severe medical condition like cancer is diagnosed too late, the worst possible outcome may occur—and surviving family members may find themselves faced with pursuing a wrongful death lawsuit while mourning the loss of a loved one. This is why it’s so essential for medical professionals to carry out their responsibilities and face consequences when they fail in their duty of care.
Common Reasons for Diagnosis Failures and Delays
When doctors and nurses do not spend enough time with a patient and fail to ask the right questions, a delayed diagnosis or failure to diagnose could occur. Here are just a few of the reasons we have seen this take place.
- Patient’s full medical history was not developed
- Medical personnel did not pay close enough attention to the patient’s symptoms and complaints
- Medical history was given but key details were not properly evaluated
- Failed to order necessary diagnostics tests
- Failed to order the right tests
- Correct tests ordered but tests improperly performed
- Wrong conclusions taken from test results
- Ignored abnormal results
Having worked with so many medical specialists sets us apart. Clients appreciate our intimate understanding of medicine and the challenges they are facing due to the negligence of doctors, nurses, or pharmacists.
MIAMI MEDICAL MALPRACTICE STATISTICS
Medical errors account for approximately 10 percent of all deaths in the United States. That makes medical malpractice the third leading cause of death in the country, after heart disease and cancer. Unfortunately, experts agree that the estimated number of deaths due to medical errors is actually far too low, due to difficulty identifying cases.
WHAT IS THE STATUTE OF LIMITATIONS ON MEDICAL MALPRACTICE IN FLORIDA?
While personal injury cases involving negligence must be brought within four years, Florida medical malpractice cases are subject to a two-year statute of limitations. This stricter procedure can be seen among a number of other states. Essentially, victims of medical malpractice must file a lawsuit within two years of knowing (or being reasonably expected to know) that they were injured.
Additionally, Florida medical malpractice cases are also limited by a four-year statute of repose. What this means is that healthcare providers cannot be sued for medical malpractice more than four years after the date of the incident. A few exceptions to this statute exist: namely, cases in which fraud, concealment, or misrepresentation played a role.
Victims of medical malpractice may find it difficult to seek legal representation for their case, particularly if they’re in the midst of recovering from a misdiagnosis injury or other medical error. Some victims may even wonder if they have a case at all. To dispel the confusion, be sure to reach out to a medical malpractice attorney in Miami as quickly as possible after your injury or experience. A knowledgeable lawyer will be able to examine the facts of the case and determine whether or not you have a reasonable medical malpractice claim.
HOW LONG DOES IT TAKE TO SETTLE A MEDICAL MALPRACTICE CASE?
One of the first questions a medical malpractice victim seeking legal counsel might have is, “How long does it take to settle a medical malpractice case?” The answer is that it depends entirely on the complexity of your case and what kind of settlement you’ll be willing to accept. Some Florida medical malpractice cases can be settled in a matter of months, while others may go on for multiple years. Everything from the nature of your injury to the number of people involved in your care can have an effect on the length of your case.
Identifying the at-fault party may also slow things down. For example, if you suffered complications after a surgery, the court will need to know exactly who was responsible—it could have been a doctor who botched the surgery, a nurse who delivered the wrong after-care instructions, or a pharmacist who filled the wrong prescription?