Q. What types of situations or errors can instigate a North Carolina medical malpractice suit?
A. There are many things a health care professional or institution can do to cause harm to a patient. Typically there are three things that result in a medical malpractice (often called med mal):
- Delay in or failure to treat
- Misdiagnosis or a failure to diagnose
- Nursing or surgical errors
Q. What are common types of medical malpractice cases?
While many instances or situations can potentially give rise to a medical malpractice lawsuit, the most common are birth injuries (including cerebral palsy and HIE brain injury cases), missed diagnoses, anesthesia errors and emergency room errors. The outcome of medical errors can be serious injury or even death.
Q. Is there a limit as to what a victim can collect?
A. No, not in North Carolina. But there are limits to "punitive damages." Punitive means to punish, so punitive damages are what the court awards beyond what a victim collects for their physical loss, medical bills, lost wages and the like. This amount is meant to send a message to the defendant that the action (or lack of action) was egregious (shocking, or horribly bad).
Q. How do I file a medical malpractice claim?
A. Attorneys who practice med mal law can assess whether you have a case and what steps to take next. The process is very complex and requires an experienced attorney because specific steps are necessary, such as working with established expert witnesses, evaluating the standard of care that was used or not followed. Depositions (sworn statements taken by attorneys) have to be collected. Evidence will also need to be procured. Additionally, the defendant will have a large "team" of their own experts, attorneys and medical professionals.
Q. How do I know if I have a case?
The best thing you can do in any situation where you were injured by a health care provider is to speak with a medical malpractice attorney. You will not know whether or not you have a case unless you do. Do not rely on insurance representatives or other health care providers for answers or guidance; they are not your advocates and they may have a conflict of interest in giving you any information or advice. Only an attorney has no conflict of interest and can advise you as your advocate.
Get The Experienced Help You Need Today
At R Steve Bowden & Associates PC, we are dedicated to getting you the fiscal and medical recovery you and your family need and deserve to move on with life. We will effectively prepare and evaluate your case. We will use established medical experts and give you superior medical negligence representation. Contact us in Greensboro today for a free initial consultation. Call us at 336-285-0925 and speak with a lawyer today. Even if you're not sure whether or not you have a case, we can help you understand your rights, options and next steps.