Medical Malpractice

Written & Researched by Ini



Storytime!!!

A good friend once opened up to me about her medical history. She was ill and then casually mentioned she had no stomach lining anymore(stomach lining - the protective lining of mucus that makes sure no thing burns from the acid). Alarmed, we asked what happened? The answer- Medical malpractice. The story is that they basically gave her way too many steroids until they burned through her stomach lining. So it makes her uncomfortable to eat because it hurts to digest food now. She can’t afford a lawyer so she has to live with it in a sense until there is a solution. This opened my eyes to the world of medical law and exploring more into this subject has been helpful.



What is?

A health professional is required to provide a standard pattern of care. However, when a patient is harmed due to deviation from the care provided in similar cases, this is known as medical malpractice. Medical Malpractice is NOT the harm gained from the normal procedure. They are legally responsible if only they neglect to provide the necessary treatment. It also occurs when the health professional overlooks to make a suitable action, or gives unsatisfactory treatment that causes damage, injury, or death to a patient.



Who?

Health Professionals might purposefully or unpurposefully conduct medical malpractice. However, if you are ever harmed, the best people to contact would be a lawyer to conduct necessary steps. Negligence is a big deal because one misstep can cause a huge problem. So, always consult lawyers and other doctors to decide if your cause is that of medical malpractice. If it is, then read What to Do?



When?

Many factors go into making a medical malpractice claim. Some include:

  • Failure to diagnose a patient or make a proper/better diagnosis that could save the patient.

  • Improper treatment: not administering the right treatment or proper treatment provided incompetently.

  • Failure to warn patients of known treatment risks - pretty self explanatory, but when a drug is administered without mentioning the likely side effects or risks, if the patients get injured, the professional can be held accountable.

  • Inability to give legitimate care.

  • The patient must also show proof of damage and injury.

  • Negligence - happens once in a while because it is hard to prove.

These and more are taken into consideration before doing a case of medical malpractice.



History

Fun fact, Under Roman law, medical malpractice was a recognized wrong. The Code of Hammurabi provided that “If the doctor has treated a gentlemen with a lancet of bronze and has caused the gentleman to die, or has opened an abscess of the eye for a gentleman with a bronze lancet, and has caused the loss of the gentleman’s eye, one shall cut off his hands.” This code moved from Babylon to Greece to Rome. Aren’t we glad we don’t live in such days? Now the repercussions are fines to a license getting revoked.



What to do?

If you or someone you know is facing a case of medical malpractice, help them contact a lawyer to settle their case. All humans make mistakes, yes this is acknowledged but this is a serious case, especially in serious injury or death. Take them to therapy to make sense of their feelings and always be there for them as emotional support.



Bibliography

  • Brazier, Yvette. "Medical Malpractice: What Does It Involve?" Medical News Today. MediLexicon International, 5 Apr. 2017. Web.

  • Bal, B Sonny. "An Introduction to Medical Malpractice in the United States." Clinical Orthopaedics and Related Research. Springer-Verlag, Feb. 2009. Web. 23 Sept. 2021.

  • Boeschen, Coulter. "Medical Malpractice Basics." www.nolo.com. Nolo, 10 Jan. 2020. Web. 23 Sept. 2021.

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