Have you or a loved one suffered an injury from medical negligence? If so, we recommend that you hire a personal injury attorney as soon as possible.
An attorney will advocate for you and help you achieve the best outcome for your case. They'll also hire experts of comparable education and experience to your doctor. That way, they can testify about how they would have acted differently to avoid injury.
Medical Negligence vs. Malpractice
Many people confuse negligence with malpractice. But these two words have different implications under the law.
Negligence happens when a doctor makes a “mistake” that results in personal injury. But the doctor was unaware of how their action or inaction could have caused harm.
Malpractice happens when a doctor fails to provide adequate medical care despite knowing better. While there was no intent to cause harm, your doctor knew that their action or inaction carried the possibility of harm.
Now that you better understand the definition of medical negligence, let’s move onto the five most common types of claims.
A misdiagnosis can result in getting the wrong treatment for a condition you don’t even have. Likewise, not diagnosing a condition until it’s too late can put your life at risk or even cause wrongful death. For example, a doctor is negligent if they don’t diagnose cancer despite obvious signs.
If you or a loved one has suffered injury from a doctor’s misdiagnosis, hire an attorney as soon as possible.
2. Surgical Error
Surgery always comes with risks. But a negligent doctor can make surgeries especially dangerous.
In the state of Michigan, you have two years from the date of injury to file a claim for medical negligence.
If you miss the deadline, you may still be able to file a claim. But it needs to be within six months of when you first discovered the injury.
Examples of surgical error include:
- Failing to maintain a sterile surgical environment
- Leaving foreign objects (like sponges) in the body
- Performing the wrong operation
- Operating on the wrong body part
- Puncturing organs
3. Medication or Prescription Error
Some medications come with serious side effects. This is especially the case when it’s the wrong prescription.
Most doctors prescribe and dispense medications correctly. But there is a small percentage of patients who become victims of medical negligence.
For example, a doctor may have prescribed the wrong medication for your condition. Likewise, a doctor may have prescribed medications that are a dangerous combination.
4. Failure to Give Medical Advice
Part of your doctor's job is educating patients about the risks of medical treatment. That way, you're able to make an informed decision before consenting to a procedure.
If this conversation didn't happen and you suffered ill effects from the procedure, you may be eligible for compensation.
5. Birth Injuries
Nothing is more heartbreaking than discovering your child has a birth injury. It may be even harder to accept if your doctor or pharmaceutical company could have prevented it.
A birth injury lawyer can help you get compensation. This will help pay for your child’s medical needs and even long-term care.
Most birth injuries happen during labor or delivery. But they can also happen as the result of improper prenatal medical care.
Examples of birth injury include:
- Forceps or bruising marks
- Fetal distress
- Brain damage from reduced blood flow
- Injuries from oxygen deprivation
- Cerebral palsy
- Umbilical cord compression
To learn more, please check out our FAQ page for birth injuries.
Request a Legal Consultation
Our medical negligence attorneys in Grand Rapids, MI, are ready to help you take your next steps. To schedule a legal consultation, call Beurkens Law at (616) 459-5344. You may also fill out our online contact form.
This blog post has been updated.