What is Medical Malpractice?

Medical malpractice is professional negligence by a healthcare provider, be it an individual medical professional (i.e.; lab technician, doctor, surgeon, nurse, lab technician) or an entire healthcare facility (i.e., hospital or clinic). Common forms of negligence include misdiagnosing a patient, failure to provide adequate care in a timely manner, surgical errors such as operating on the wrong body part or leaving medical tools inside a patient, and either prescribing the wrong medication or prescribing/administering the wrong dosage of medication to a patient.

Examples of Medical Malpractice and Negligence in Utah

While most medical professionals in the Beehive State strive to provide the best possible care in all circumstances, some fail to meet industry standards and their failure causes lifelong suffering in the lives of patients of all ages and walks of life. In one instance, a woman who came to a hospital to give birth was not given a C-Section in a timely manner due to the negligence of a senior doctor on the scene, and the newborn baby developed cerebral palsy as a result. A local mail carrier died because a pathologist wrongly told him that a lump on the back of his neck was benign when in fact it was a malignant tumor. A woman who experienced excruciating pain in her stomach for eight years after a hysterectomy is operated on yet again discovers that the cause of her pain and suffering is a towel left in her stomach eight years earlier.

How to Prove Negligence

In some instances, the evidence of negligence is impossible to ignore. For instance, if a surgical tool is found inside a patient after surgery, there is no question that the doctor who performed the operation is at fault. This same point applies if a surgeon operates on the wrong body part. On the other hand, some cases are less clear-cut. If a wrong diagnosis was given, a person who suffered from a lack of needed care as a result has to prove that an initial, correct diagnosis would have changed the outcome. In cases involving medication doctors or pharmacists may claim that the patient did not provide complete or accurate information regarding previous allergic reactions to certain medications and/or did not take the medication in accordance with the medical provider’s instructions.

In any case, hiring an SLC medical malpractice attorney is a must. The state of Utah has a two-year statute of limitations on medical malpractice cases, which means that one would need to file a case in a timely manner in order to claim the compensation that is due. What’s more, the sooner one hires a qualified SLC medical malpractice attorney, the sooner the attorney can collect evidence on one’s behalf.

An attorney can help a patient collect evidence not only from the patient’s medical care provider but also from other medical experts. A Salt Lake City Medical Malpractice Attorney can also help a patient collect evidence showing the adverse effect the medical negligence had on the patient’s life, health, and well-being.

How Does a Medical Malpractice Lawsuit Play Out?

Once the evidence has been documented, a Salt Lake City medical malpractice attorney will ask the client how he or she would like to proceed with the case. Utah law allows a case to proceed even if the medical profession is not 100% at fault for the injury; however, a patient cannot claim compensation if he or she is more than 50% at fault. Non-economic damages (i.e., pain and suffering, emotional damage) are capped by $450,000 by state law; however, there is no cap on economic damages such as lost wages and costs of past, current, or future medical care and treatment.

In most cases, an SLC medical malpractice case will be settled out of court rather than by trial. Settling a case provides a patient with the immediate compensation he or she needs in order to cover medical bills, make up for lost wages, and seek qualified medical care to reserve some of the damage caused by medical negligence while also helping a medical care provider avoid the bad publicity that is an inevitable part of any SLC medical malpractice case. If the case does to go court, a good medical malpractice lawyer Salt Lake City will provide proper representation to the client, doing everything in his or her power to help the client win the compensation that is his or her due.

Introducing Craig Swapp & Associates

We offer experienced legal assistance and expertise to anyone who needs a medical malpractice lawyer Salt Lake City. What’s more, our team has a winning track record that will raise your odds of receiving the compensation that you need and deserve after having been a victim of medical malpractice. Get in touch with us at your convenience to receive fast, personalized legal assistance that can make a life-changing difference in your SLC medical malpractice case.

Written By: Ryan Swapp     Legal Review By: Craig Swapp