The medical standard of care is crucial to proving medical malpractice cases as it proves that the medical professional treating the patient was negligent and harm resulted. Medical malpractice can occur in many ways, for example:
- Neglecting to provide proper treatment
- Failing to take action or properly diagnose a patient
- Medical Errors
- Improper Documentation
- Surgical Errors
As a Fort Lauderdale, Florida medical malpractice lawyer can share, medical professionals are held to the medical standard of care, meaning that the care administered to the patient is similar to that of a professional in the same field. When medical negligence happens, it’s essential to determine whether the medical professional upheld this standard of care.
Access to Experts
Proving the medical standard of care requires an expert witness who can carefully review the case and understand what happened. Typically expert witnesses for malpractice cases are doctors in a similar field. Their role is to assist in determining what went wrong and whether the damages could have been avoided if another physician had provided treatment in the same field. It’s also important to note that medical records can be challenging to decipher, which is why an expert witness is imperative. They will gain insight into the case and help legal teams, insurance adjusters, the court, and the jury understand what exactly went wrong.
Determining the Value of a Medical Malpractice Case
Typically there are two types of values assigned to medical malpractice cases. There is a settlement value, which is the compensation that victims may receive through negotiations, and there is trial value, which is the possible award should the case go to court. While court verdicts may result in higher compensation, they can be risky because victims risk walking away empty-handed if unsuccessful. When determining a value for the case, a lawyer will carefully review the damages involved, which may include:
Economic Damages: cover the financial cost of the accident (lost wages, medical costs, etc.)
Non-Economic Damages: include non-tangible losses (pain and suffering, emotional damage, etc.)
It’s essential to be aware that in Florida, there is a cap of $500,000 on non-economic damages, but in cases with more severe outcomes, this cap increases to $1,000,000. However, the state recently ruled caps on non-economic damages for medical malpractice to be unconstitutional.
Following malpractice, victims and their families should retain services from our experienced team at The Law Offices of Needle & Ellenberg, P.A. With the complexities surrounding these types of cases, a lawyer and the resources they have available are crucial. Schedule a consultation with our Fort Lauderdale, FL, medical malpractice lawyer for more information.