How Do I Know If My Injury Constitutes Medical Malpractice?

Medical professionals are not expected to be infallible and there may be poor results from treatment that do not amount to malpractice. Medical professionals are expected to have the basic knowledge and skills normally possessed and used by the average medical professional in their area of practice. This basic knowledge and skill is called a standard of practice, or standard of care. When a medical professional treats a patient and fails to use this basic knowledge and skill, whether the failure consists of doing something incorrectly, or failing to do something that should be done, that failure is a deviation from the standard of practice or care. The injured party must first prove that the health care provider fell below the standard of care for similar health care providers in Arizona. That means the health care provider failed to act as a reasonable and prudent health care provider in Arizona would under similar circumstances. The injured patient must then prove that the health care provider`s breach of the standard of care was a cause of significant injury to the patient. Expert testimony is generally required to establish a breach of the standard of care, unless the alleged negligence is grossly apparent. It is important to note that medical malpractice claims are very difficult to prevail in and are also extremely expensive partly due to the need for qualified expert review and testimony. Whether or not you have a good case depends on the professional judgment of attorneys and medical experts. If you are told that you do not have a case with merit, you should seek another opinion from one or more other attorneys.

The information on this page is meant to provide a general overview of the law. The laws in your state and/or city may deviate significantly from those described here. If you have specific questions related to your situation you should speak with a local attorney.

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