Not every mistake is medical malpractice.
Medical professionals such as doctors, nurses and radiologists are human beings and mistakes happen. Only under specific circumstances are mistakes considered medical malpractice.
In California, medical malpractice can involve any licensed healthcare provider. It occurs when the provider does not live up to the standard of care for treating a patient and the patient is injured as a result.
Medical malpractice does not happen when the patient didn’t like something the doctor said or done or if the patient had a bad experience at the hospital. Perhaps the doctor accidentally prescribed the wrong dosage of a medicine, but it never taken. Let’s assume it was taken for a day or two and the patient only experienced a slight headache or another minor side effect without further harm.
The above are examples of a patient that was not harmed; he or she did not suffer a serious injury. There is no basis for a medical malpractice lawsuit. If you believe you were treated badly by a doctor, file a complaint.
Doctors and other medical professionals are supposed to treat a patient with a certain standard of care. They are supposed to conduct themselves in certain ways when confronted with different types of injuries or illnesses.
For example, if the doctor failed to order an x-ray when the standard calls for one, but you were not made worse because of this, the lack of an x-ray is irrelevant to your case.
If an individual is showing symptoms of a heart attack, the hospital has procedures it’s supposed to follow. If the hospital doesn’t follow those procedures, it didn’t follow the standard of care. But, if your doctor sent you home in the middle of a heart attack because he failed to order the right tests, and your heart attack was worse because of this, then the violation of the standard of care can be directly related to your injury.
So, if your doctor or the hospital made a mistake, the injury you suffered has to be directly related to the violation of the standard of care. Your attorney must be able to prove that when the doctor or hospital made a mistake, your standard of care was violated and your injury was directly caused by the mistake made.
Finally, according to California Code of Civil Procedure Section 340.5, “The suit must be initiated within 3 years after the date of injury or 1 year after the date of discovery, whichever occurs first. The date of discovery is the date the patient discovers, or through the use of reasonable diligence should have discovered it.”
If you were seriously injured when your doctor made a mistake, contact the San Bernardino personal injury attorneys in the law office of Welebir Tierney & Weck. We have been successful in other medical malpractice cases and we can help you. We will discuss your case with you and give you an honest opinion of where you stand.