Medical negligence often occurs for many reasons, with data showing that 48.6% of medical negligent cases were settled without payment of damages. Experiencing such situations can be overwhelming, but knowing how to prove medical negligence can help avoid non-payment of damages and make the case more bearable. Below are three ways to prove medical negligence.
- Establishing duty of care
Over the years, it has become critical to establish the existence of a duty of care in medical negligent cases. It is the first and foremost element any court or defense lawyer will demand or seek to punch holes in. The truth is that every doctor-patient relationship carries with it an inherent duty of care that cannot be ignored. The medical professional is mandated by the rules governing the practice to provide a reasonable standard of care in line with the field. Anything contrary to that gives rise to medical negligence and a protracted case when sued. As a victim of medical negligence, you must provide irrefutable proof of a patient-doctor relationship during the time of treatment. There must be evidence to prove that the medical professional was handling your health condition at the time of the alleged negligence. Your lawyer will usually establish this in court through medical records, witness testimonies, appointment documentation, and so on. Any valid evidence to establish a duty of care will be accepted in court. When that is finally established, the next step will be to determine whether the physician’s actions are aligned with standard practice or involve gross incompetence or recklessness.
- Gathering evidence of a breach of duty
As indicated earlier, gathering evidence of a breach of duty is crucial. You and your lawyer must be able to prove a breach in the standard of care a healthcare professional is supposed to provide. It is easy to conclude that misdiagnosis, medication mistakes, surgical errors, and a failure to obtain informed consent as some breaches of duty. However, it would help if you had professional guidance to confirm that. In such cases, a personal injury lawyer will prove helpful to your case. These are specialised lawyers with ample experience in proving breach of duty in medical negligent cases. They have helped individuals in similar situations navigate the complex terrain of gathering evidence where medical negligence is concerned. Moreover, whether you are a direct victim of medical negligence or not, expert guidance is needed to retrieve crucial testimonies, critical documents, and so on.
- Demonstrating causation and harm
A good defense lawyer can punch holes even after you have presented evidence of a duty breach. The only way they can do that is when you fail to establish a direct link between the two crucial elements you presented to the court. An experienced personal injury lawyer will quickly establish that critical link to demonstrate that the negligent actions caused harm or worsened your condition. The key here is causation and effect, and an experienced injury lawyer will help establish that. This stage can be challenging to navigate, which is why you and your legal representatives will need expert opinions and comprehensive medical evidence.
Meticulous attention to detail can bring a medical negligence case to full completion and, more importantly, help ensure you’re paid the required damages.