It is the responsibility of medical personnel, including doctors and nurses, to provide appropriate treatment for apparent or diagnosed illness and injury. Failure to do so is a form of medical negligence that can lead to serious complications, long-term suffering, and in some cases, even death.
If you or a loved one has experienced severe health problems due to a doctor, nurse, or medical personnel’s failure to provide appropriate treatment for your illness or injury, our team of Raleigh medical malpractice attorneys can help. We are able to fight on your behalf to get you the compensation necessary to pay your medical bills, recover lost wages, and hold the parties responsible accountable.
Understanding Appropriate Treatment in Medical Malpractice
In order for a case to be considered medical negligence, specifically, determining a failure to provide appropriate care, the specifics of the case must fall under certain legal parameters. There are four conditions for medical malpractice under the domain of negligence:
- Duty: Care that a minimally competent doctor or nurse would provide
- Breach of duty: Failure to provide standard of care
- Harm: Knowingly failing to provide the proper standard of care
- Causation: Breach of duty has the potential to injure or cause harm
Failure to provide appropriate care falls under the breach of duty.
Using Standard of Care As a Guideline to Provide Medical Treatment
All physicians and medical personnel are legally required to provide “Standard of Care.” This is a legal term, not a medical term, used to define the degree of care and skill a minimally competent health care provider would provide in the same circumstances and with the same resources.
Standard of care does not mean “perfection in practice” because most medical procedures and treatments do involve some risk, and complications can happen. However, if a physician fails to provide a treatment or delays giving the treatment that a reasonable physician would do given the same information, then he or she is most likely found to commit a breach of duty.
Determining the Standard of Care in Medical Negligence and Appropriate Treatment
For decades, juries were expected to weigh evidence based on what a reasonable or minimally competent doctor would do in a given situation with the same resources available. This meant that legal teams on both sides were tasked with providing their interpretation of what a minimally competent doctor would be expected to do, which meant there was little to no consistency in cases.
However, a growing use of clinical practice guidelines (CPGs), which are third-party written definitions of the role of diagnostic and treatment methods in how to care for patients, are becoming widely used in medical negligence cases. CPGs are evidence-based statements that come from rigorous peer review in medical journals. Also, medical experts are also brought in to cases to testify on what is considered a reasonable course of action and what a competent physician or healthcare provider would be expected to do.
Common Outcomes of the Failure to Provide Appropriate Treatment in Raleigh
When a healthcare provider diagnoses an injury or an illness, their next step is to provide an appropriate treatment to aid their patient. Depending on the illness or injury, this can include medication, surgery, or types of therapy, and administering the wrong treatment can lead to dangerous outcomes. From providing the wrong medicine or choosing to delay a life-saving surgery, if a situation is made worse due to a failure to provide and administer the right treatment, the medical provider can be held legally accountable for their negligence.
In order for a case to be found in the plaintiff’s favor, not only must it be determined that the medical personnel delayed or failed to provide treatment, there must be damaging consequences or additional injury. Common outcomes due to failure to treat a diagnosis in a timely and appropriate manner include:
- Organ damage or failure
- Disease spreading and worsening, such as in the case of cancer cells spreading
- Loss of limbs or loss of the use of limbs
- Brain damage
Contact Our Raleigh Medical Malpractice Attorneys to Learn More
A patient depends on receiving the best care possible from healthcare providers once given a diagnosis. If you feel you or a loved one sustained injury because a healthcare provider failed to care for you appropriately, contact our team of medical malpractice lawyers in Raleigh. We hold negligent healthcare professionals accountable for their inaction and will work to get you the compensation you deserve. Call us at 919-615-2473 or fill out the form below to schedule a consultation.
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