When you visit your doctor, dentist, chiropractor, or other health care professional, or when you enter the hospital to undergo surgery or other treatment, you expect every member of your health care team to have the education, skill, experience and dedication to make you better than you were before you sought their help. The last thing you expect is that someone will make a mistake that worsens your original condition.
Unfortunately, however, expectations and reality are often two separate things. In fact, medical errors have become the third leading cause of deaths each year in this country. In other words, medical malpractice is all too common today.
Role of a Medical Malpractice Lawyer
If you believe you were injured because of medical malpractice, an experienced local medical malpractice lawyer can be not only your greatest ally but also your most effective advocate in the lawsuit you bring against the health care professional whose negligence caused your injuries and the company or organization for which he or she works.
Medical malpractice claims are some of the most complicated lawsuits a plaintiff can bring. Why? Several reasons, including the following:
- Hospitals and other health care organizations tend to protect their own, especially the doctors who work for them.
- While neither the organization nor its employees will actually lie about medical errors that occur, they nevertheless often seek to obfuscate the facts of what happened.
- Studies show that only about two-thirds of physicians volunteer error information to
- their affected patients.
- Medical terminology is difficult for laymen, including judges and juries, to understand.
An experienced medical malpractice attorney can conduct a thorough investigation into what likely caused your injury. Not only can he or she carefully scrutinize your medical records, but also can look for inconsistencies with similar treatments where the patient suffered no ill effects.
In addition, an experienced medical malpractice attorney knows medical terminology and what various words and phrases mean in layman’s terms. He or she can therefore effectively argue the value of your case to the defendant’s insurance company. He or she also should know from prior experience when the insurance company is attempting to minimize your injuries by offering you a low settlement amount.
In the event a trial becomes necessary, the skill of your medical malpractice lawyer can make all the difference in how the jury perceives your injuries and how they assign a value to them. To help in these regards, your lawyer likely will engage appropriate expert witnesses to testify on your behalf.