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The injured patient must then prove that the health care provider`s breach of the standard of care was a proximate cause of the injuries to the patient. In other words, there must be a close connection between the action of the health care provider and the harm to the patient. Finally, you have to show what damages resulted form the alleged mistake. This may include medical bills, lost wages, pain and suffering, etc. Ordinarily, unless a health care provider`s conduct is readily recognizable by a layperson as causing the patient`s injury, expert opinion testimony is required before it can be inferred that the health care provider`s want of skill or care, if any, was the legal cause of the patient`s injury.
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. In fact, every medical malpractice action must be reviewed by a tribunal consisting of a judge, a lawyer and a physician to determine whether the evidence submitted is sufficient to raise a legitimate question of liability appropriate for judicial inquiry or whether the plaintiff`s case is merely an unfortunate medical result. The panel`s findings and expert testimony are admissible at trial. If the panel finds against the claimant, the claimant must post a $6,000 bond for the payment of the defendants` costs if the claimant is unsuccessful at trial as well.
This article is intended to be helpful and informative. But even common legal matters can become complex and stressful. A qualified medical malpractice lawyer can address your particular legal needs, explain the law, and represent you in court. Take the first step now and contact a local medical malpractice attorney to discuss your specific legal situation.