This article is a continuation of the previous article we wrote on medical malpractice myths.
Most Malpractice lawsuits are frivolous
Many people falsely believe that medical malpractice lawsuits are largely baseless. This is just not true. In fact, the Harvard School of Public Health conducted a study which concluded that roughly 97% involved malpractice which entitled patients to compensation due to their injuries.
Medical malpractice lawsuits are easy to resolve and settle
This is also not true. A medical malpractice suit can be a lengthy and complex ordeal which most attorneys are apprehensive to take on. Most medical malpractice suits go to trial. In fact, at our office, we turn down the vast majority of potential clients that come to us with complaints that their medical provider did something wrong. It could be because liability would be too difficult to prove. It could be because the damages were not severe enough to warrant the expense and financial risk of proceeding with a case.
The majority of medical malpractice occurrences are unpreventable
As stated above, nearly 99,000 people die annually due to medical errors. And those errors may in fact be preventable. These sorts of preventable errors include wrong-site surgery, misdiagnosis, object retention, and other errors which can only be chalked up to medical negligence. Doctors have a term for this. They call it a “mal- occurrence.” That means something went bad in the medical care, but it was not necessarily negligence. In some cases, negligence cannot be proven. But in those cases where the medical care fell below the accepted standard of care, the law says that is negligence. And, if the injured patient’s damages are severe enough, it may warrant a medical malpractice lawsuit.
Insurance companies and the US Chamber of Commerce have successfully poisoned jury pools through their 50 year propaganda campaign. They make it seem that medical malpractice lawsuits are frivolous, generally have no merit, and cause more problems than they correct. The press in this country has bought into it. In reality, medical malpractice lawsuits weed out bad doctors and bad medicine.
For more information on medical malpractice lawsuits and the common forms of medical malpractice, see the many other articles found on our website. Also, see our follow-up articles on medical malpractice truths.
Stuart A. Carpey, who has been practicing as an attorney since 1987, focuses his practice on complex civil litigation which includes representing injured individuals in a vast array of personal injury cases.