Medical Malpractice Attorney in Tampa, FL
Can I file a lawsuit for medical malpractice?
Those in the medical profession are mere mortals, and like all of us, they can make mistakes. They don’t do this deliberately, and their intention is not to purposefully injure patients. But they are human beings who make errors, and often those errors are the consequence of factors which they have control over. Unfortunately, doctors sometimes give an inaccurate diagnosis or poorly execute their procedures or treatment, resulting in severe injuries or even death. If this has happened to you, our firm’s Tampa, FL medical malpractice attorney can help you stand up for your rights, address the incident and hold the medical professional accountable so the practice does not continue and harm is not done to others.
Malpractice occurs when a healthcare worker, doctor or surgeon makes a mistake that injures a patient. In order to bring a claim, you will have to prove the doctor was negligent (meaning that his actions fell below the standard of care) and that the negligence caused the injury or death.
Examples of potential medical malpractice claims involve the following:
- Childbirth Injuries
- Failure to Diagnose
- Emergency Room Errors
- Hospital Malpractice
- Medication Errors
- Failure to Diagnose
- Negligent Prenatal Care
- Spinal Cord Injuries/Paralysis
- Surgical Mistakes
- Unnecessary Surgery
- Anesthesia errors
In 2016, Johns Hopkins Hospital published the results of a study on medical negligence and estimated that medical errors result in 250,000 deaths each year. This estimate ranks medical malpractice as the third leading cause of death in the United States behind heart disease and cancer. However, according to another study by Johns Hopkins in 2013, it was estimated that only 1% of all adverse medical incidents actually result in malpractice claims or lawsuits. There could be a number of reasons for this. Perhaps people do not know that their bad medical result might have been caused by malpractice. Some people may not even know they have the right to bring a medical malpractice claim if there was negligence.
It is important to know that malpractice claims can be very complicated and are very expensive to pursue. There are also a number of hoops to jump through before you can obtain a successful outcome. The first thing to know is there are deadlines (statutes of limitation) to file a medical malpractice lawsuit. Florida law requires that you must file the lawsuit within two years of the malpractice. There is an exception to this limitation, but it is best to move forward under the presumption that you only have 2 years to file.
Our Tampa, FL medical malpractice lawyer can explain in detail how we’ll need to serve a notice of intent to sue on the health care provider before you can file a lawsuit. This requires you to file an affidavit from a medical professional (referred to as an expert) stating that there was medical malpractice and that you have a valid claim. Once you file this notice, a 90-day timeframe begins where the statute of limitations is tolled. If the health care provider indicates earlier than 90 days that it does not wish to settle, then you generally have 60 days to file a lawsuit. There are some exceptions to this timeframe.
Florida’s medical malpractice statutes are very complicated and it is critical that you hire an experienced malpractice attorney as soon as possible to properly preserve your claim. I have had a number of clients call my office who appeared to have a good claim, but I could not help them because the statute of limitations had already passed.
At Jeff Murphy Law, we understand the medical malpractice laws and the critical deadlines and procedures that apply before you can file a lawsuit.
If you or a loved one has suffered injuries due to the negligence of a medical care provider, call us today for a free consultation.
The Medical Negligence “Discovery Process”
One of the most important things that an experienced medical malpractice attorney in Tampa, FL can do on your behalf involves investigating exactly what led to the medical negligence that harmed you. Oftentimes, physicians, medical care facilities, administrators, and insurance providers do everything they can to downplay their contributions to medical negligence injuries. It can therefore be difficult to obtain and preserve evidence related to medical malpractice cases and to reconstruct exactly what happened that led to the victim’s injuries in question. However, the experienced Florida legal team at Jeff Murphy law is experienced in what we do and we know what questions to ask, where to look, and how to interpret evidentiary findings that could make or break your case.
How Missing or Misinterpreted Data Leads to Medical Malpractice
One of the primary factors that leads to medical negligence involves missing or misinterpreted patient information. This does not mean that the patient fails to provide information. It means that in the daily back and forth of taking patient histories, writing orders and prescriptions, sending information to and from labs, etc. information relevant to the patient’s care goes missing or is misinterpreted. Misdiagnosis and delayed diagnosis are just two of the many medical malpractice situations that arise from missing or misinterpreted data all too often in Florida and throughout the United States.
According to an article published in September, 2020 by U.S. News and World Report, “As many as 62% of laboratory and 36% of imaging results are overlooked by care providers. In some cases, the missed result is critical, with devastating consequences for patients.” As a result, one of our jobs is to figure out whether any or your lab, test, or procedure results were overlooked, misinterpreted, or inaccurately communicated before you suffered consequences that could mean that you’re a victim of medical negligence. If you have any medical records that could be helpful to our case assessment, please feel free to bring any that you’re comfortable sharing to your consultation.
Legal Assistance Is Available
If you believe that you may have been the victim of medical malpractice, even if you’re not sure that you have the grounds to take legal action, please connect with our firm’s Tampa, FL medical malpractice attorney today. Understand that you don’t have to have all the details or know all of the relevant laws to explore your options. Our firm offers free consultations so that you can ask questions in a safe, confidential setting. The choice to move forward with legal action or not will always be left up to you. It is simply our job to advise you of your legal options so that you can make an informed choice about your situation. We look forward to learning about your situation; please schedule a consultation with Jeff Murphy Law today.