Medical malpractice is a singular or series of decisions made in a medical environment that leads to worsening injuries or death. This is considered a deviation from the “standard of care.” Ultimately, these decisions affect the outcome of the patient’s ability to resume life the same as before receiving medical treatment. This includes reduced mobility, tremendous pain that is debilitating to continue everyday activities, and more. As the third leading cause of death in the U.S. after cancer and heart disease, medical malpractice cases are serious and require seasoned legal representation to pursue justice for injuries.
What counts as a medical malpractice case in Arizona?
Because medical care is ever-evolving, the types of scenarios that count as medical malpractice cases continue to grow. Our Arizona-based personal injury lawyers have put together the top causes:
- Delayed diagnoses
- Anesthesia errors
- Improper prescription drug dosage
- Pharmacy errors (wrong medications distributed)
- Mislabeled medical tests and lab work
- Birthing injuries (to both the mother and the child)
- Surgical errors
- Defective cosmetic or orthopedic implants
Speak up at any point of receiving medical care at an Arizona-based medical facility that you are questionable about. It does not matter whether you are the patient or a loved one of the patient. Always ask questions, especially when a procedure or medication can affect the quality of life. If you feel that you are not being heard, then it’s time to reach out to a medical malpractice attorney to protect you and your loved ones’ rights.
A medical malpractice attorney is a personal injury lawyer who focuses more on medical-related cases. They often have medical experts on standby to help interpret charts, prescriptions, and other documentation involving a patient’s care to determine where “standard care” crossed the line to malpractice.
Because medical malpractice cases are more complex than other types of personal injury claims, you should be prepared for one of five possible outcomes:
- Case dismissal without review – If you are looking to pursue medical malpractice or wrongful death against a health care provider, albeit a physician, nurse, medical facility or healthcare insurance company, there is a statute of limitations of two years from the recorded deceased date. If a case is brought on after this time has lapsed, a case review will most likely not happen.
- Case reviewed with “low ball” settlement offer – It is very important to seek the help of a legal professional with experience in medical malpractice before accepting any settlement offers. Many medical malpractice cases start out with a “low ball” settlement offer, which almost never equates to the mounting medical bills.
- Case reviewed with adequate settlement offer – Trial preparation continues, but your medical malpractice attorney uses the advantages of the mediation phase to help you reach an adequate settlement without going into the courtroom. Both sides often prefer legal mediation for medical malpractice cases because these are often high-profile proceedings. In the event a satisfactory agreement cannot be reached, your attorney is prepared to go to trial when necessary.
- Trial Verdict – If no appropriate settlement can be reached before trial, then your medical malpractice attorney will take your case to the courtroom. Trials can take weeks, if not months, to complete. This means any possibility of compensation is prolonged, and the amount depends on the jury appropriation.
- Appeal Verdict – Your attorney has the option to appeal your case to the state or federal appellate court. The decision to do so hinges on the jury’s appropriation of settlement funds and the trial verdict. This option is risky though. The verdict of the appellate court overrules and precedes the trial verdict, so it is possible to not receive a settlement of any amount. This includes any low-ball offers or the jury-appropriated compensation value.
Pursuing a medical malpractice case in Arizona is worth it no matter what the outcome. You and your loved one deserve to hold the liable party accountable for their role in the loss of life. At the very least a precedent can be established by having the actions that count as a deviation from “standard care” on record. When you are ready to seek justice for injuries or wrongful death from a health care provider, contact one of the Arizona medical malpractice attorneys at Skousen, Gulbrandsen & Patience, PLC. Our personal injury lawyer’s office is in Mesa, AZ, and we offer free consultations to all victims and their loved ones.