When a healthcare provider fails to provide appropriate treatment and causes an injury or death to a patient, it is referred to as medical malpractice. If you are a victim, the law provides recourse, and you have a right to be compensated for the harm you suffered.
Like all other personal injury instances, there are elements to medical malpractice cases which include:
- The existence of a duty of care (like a patient-doctor relationship)
- The breach of that duty of care (via action or inaction)
- A relationship between the breach of duty and the patient’s injuries
- The existence of damages arising from the medical malpractice
Some common types of such malpractice include misdiagnosis, premature discharge, surgical errors, prescription errors or even poor follow-up or aftercare.
You have a legal deadline to make your claim
A legal clock called the statute of limitations determines how much time you have to seek legal redress. This applies to all personal injury cases, and medical malpractice incidents are no exception. Georgia law states that you have two years from the date you suffer injuries from medical malpractice to bring a lawsuit or make a claim — although the clock may not start ticking until you are either know (or should reasonably have known) about the incident and injury. Some exceptions apply to these limitations, and it is essential to be aware of them if you are a victim of medical malpractice. For instance, if a foreign object is left inside your body, you have one year upon discovery of the object to bring action against that malpractice. Plus, almost no malpractice claims can be made after five years, no matter how long it took for the malpractice to be discovered.
Being informed about aspects of personal injury law will put you in a better position. Navigating your case will also be easier once you know what to expect along the way.