Best Florida Medical Malpractice Attorney
Medical malpractice occurs when a patient suffers injuries due to negligent actions perpetrated by medical providers. Medical malpractice doesn’t encompass all types of mistakes made by medical professionals.
Rather, medical malpractice happens when a healthcare provider (i.e., doctor, nurse, hospital, etc.) does not meet the expected standard of care outlined in Florida statute § 766.102.
It’s sometimes okay to sacrifice service or accept mistakes, but not when it comes to healthcare. If you or your loved one has suffered injuries due to a medical provider’s failure to provide adequate service, you deserve justice.
Contact a Florida medical malpractice attorney today at Schrier Law Group at 1-800-700-PAUL for your free initial consultation. Continue reading to learn more about medical malpractice laws in Florida.
What Constitutes as Medical Malpractice?
Otherwise known as medical negligence, medical malpractice refers to negligence perpetrated by a medical professional that results in an injury to the patient. That can also include scenarios in which the medical provider fails to take medically necessary actions.
Generally, medical negligence can happen anywhere that medical services are rendered, including:
- Nursing Homes and Assisted Living Facilities
- Outpatient Clinics
- Emergency Rooms
Regardless of where it happens, a breach of the medical standards of care can lead to a medical malpractice lawsuit. Continue reading to learn about the most common forms of medical malpractice in Florida.
Failure to Diagnose
Failure to diagnose a medical condition is a leading cause of patient injuries and deaths. A medical professional may be guilty of neglect if they fail to diagnose an injury, disease, illness, etc., leading to worsened conditions or wrongful death.
Failure to diagnose can happen for many reasons, including faulty diagnostic equipment, misplaced medical files, improper training, overworked staff, etc. Generally, a patient must prove that any reasonably competent doctor would have otherwise appropriately diagnosed their medical issue under the same circumstances.
Similar to failure to diagnose, misdiagnosis occurs when a physician improperly diagnoses a patient. For example, suppose a patient has a broken foot but the doctor improperly diagnoses them with a broken wrist. In that case, the physician may be guilty of unreasonable misdiagnosis.
A few of the most common ways a doctor can fail to meet medical standards of care when misdiagnosing a patient can include:
- Failure to include essential information about a potential condition registering on the initial differential diagnosis list
- Failure to correctly interpret or conduct a diagnostic test
- Failure to recognize the urgency of a potential health problem
Delaying a Diagnosis
Medical providers must adhere to the healthcare communities standard of care when diagnosing a patient. That means that they must use the right diagnostic tools (i.e., blood tests, EKGs, MRIs, etc.) and deliver prompt treatment when necessary. Failure to reasonably diagnose a condition like cancer can lead to serious health conditions and even death.
Post-op care refers to the medical care you receive after surgery. That means that physicians must uphold their medical duty of care even after the surgery is completed.
If they neglect to properly monitor patients post-surgery, they may be liable for medical malpractice if injuries occur. Generally, the most common post-op concerns include infections, blood clots, and allergic reactions.
Surgical errors happen all too often. They can occur due to incompetence, lack of appropriate staffing, tiredness, impairment, medication errors, and more. The most common types of surgery mistakes in Florida include:
- Infections caused by unsanitized or contaminated equipment
- Pre-operative mistakes
- Cutting or puncturing vital organs or another part of the body
- Errors in anesthesia administration
- Unnecessary surgical procedures
- Surgical instruments left inside of a patient’s body
Medication errors are most likely to occur at nursing homes and assisted living facilities. However, they also happen at hospitals and outpatient clinics.
Administering the wrong medication or failure to administer any medication can lead to devastating consequences for patients. Some of the most common medication errors in Florida include:
- Prescribing the wrong medication
- Administering the wrong medications or dosage
- Failure to take into consideration a patient’s medical history before prescribing
- Prescribing medications that should not be mixed
- Failure to provide patients with needed medications
- Improper preparation of the medicine by a pharmacist
Nursing Home Errors
Nurses and physicians working in nursing homes and assisted living facilities owe their patients the same duty of care as other medical providers. With that in mind, many Florida nursing homes are understaffed and overpopulated, leading to higher instances of medical malpractice.
Common examples of malpractice in nursing homes include:
- Failure to document a patient’s medical history
- Failure to meet medical standards of care
- Not using medical equipment appropriately or in the right circumstances
- Lack of adequate patient monitoring and supervision
- Failure to give patients the right prescription
Medical malpractice insurance for anesthesiologists is notoriously expensive. That’s because anesthesia errors are a leading cause of injuries and death in the medical industry. With that in mind, some of the most common anesthesia mistakes include:
- Failure to review a patient’s medical history before administering anesthesia
- Improperly placed endotracheal tubes
- Too much or too little anesthesia
- Lack of patient monitoring
- Faulty or turned-off monitoring equipment
- The patient becomes aware of surgery while under anesthesia
Misreading Scans, MRIs, Ultrasounds, Etc.
Misreading diagnostic tools can lead to severe consequences like misdiagnosis, improper diagnosis, surgical mistakes, and more. When a doctor misreads a scan, MRI, ultrasound, etc., it’s more likely to result in patient injuries and death.
Emergency Room Mistakes
It’s important to note that under most circumstances, ambulance staff is immune from medical malpractice laws. However, that immunity does not apply to the emergency room at the hospital. In many cases, overcrowded and chaotic emergency rooms lead to mistakes that medical providers would not otherwise commit.
Birth injuries refer to physical injuries suffered by a newborn child that occur during pregnancy or in the process of giving birth. Unfortunately, many birth injuries are caused by medical negligence. Examples of conditions resulting from birth injuries include:
- Brain swelling
- Cerebral Palsy or Erb’s Palsy
- Bone breaks and skull fractures
- Brain or spinal cord damage
What Do I Need to Prove Medical Malpractice?
If you’re injured due to negligent medical care providers, you may be eligible to file a medical malpractice lawsuit in Florida. However, it should be noted that winning a medical malpractice suit is rarely easy.
Your Florida medical malpractice attorney must prove the following elements for a successful malpractice suit:
- Proof of a doctor-patient relationship: the first step is to prove that you have an official doctor-patient relationship with the negligent healthcare provider.
- The medical provider or facility breached the standard of care: You and your Florida medical malpractice lawyer must show convincing evidence that the accused healthcare provider breached the standard of care. Under the Florida Malpractice Act, you must enlist the help of a medical expert to prove your claims.
- The physician’s negligence was the “proximate” cause of the injuries or wrongful death: Further, you must show that the physician’s negligence was the “proximate cause” of your injuries. Essentially, there must be proof that your injuries occurred as a result of the doctor’s negligence.
- You or your loved one suffered significant harm due to the doctor’s negligence: Lastly, you and your Florida medical malpractice attorney must prove that you suffered serious harm as a result of your doctor’s negligent acts.
It’s important to remember that there is a time limit to file medical malpractice claims. The statute of limitations for malpractice lawsuits is two years in Florida. That means that if you fail to initiate a malpractice claim within the time limit, you may not be eligible to pursue damages.
In most cases, the clock to file a malpractice suit starts two years after the date of the injury.
Florida’s Three Strikes Law
Florida has some of the strictest medical malpractice laws in the nation. Under Florida law, any physician who has three medical malpractice judgments on their record is banned from practicing medicine in the state for life.
With that in mind, medical malpractice insurers and physicians are more likely to quickly settle a strong malpractice claim than they are to fight it. However, it often requires the skill, experience, and savvy of a Florida medical malpractice lawyer to present a viable claim.
Schrier Law Group’s Medical Malpractice Attorneys
The best Florida medical malpractice attorney for your case must have an in-depth understanding of Florida medical malpractice laws, tendencies of certain medical institutions to settle, and strong connections with well-respected medical experts.
At Schrier Law Group, our attorneys don’t back down from anyone. We keep fighting for our clients until they receive the compensation they deserve.
If you’ve suffered injuries due to the negligence of a physician or healthcare entity, you may be eligible to recover certain damages for the following:
- Medical bills
- Loss of enjoyment
- Loss of consortium
- Decreased or lost income
- Inability to earn an income
- Pain and suffering
- Cost of rehabilitation
- Long-term medical costs
Don’t wait until it’s too late to file a medical malpractice claim in Florida. Contact Schrier Law Group today for your free, initial consultation.