Individuals everywhere put their lives in the hands of medical professionals on a daily basis. We trust these doctors to implement the best treatment plans for cancer patients, discover why someone has been suffering from excruciating abdominal pain, and safely deliver newborn babies to their parents. While plenty of successful medical procedures are completed and many patients are accurately treated, not everyone is quite as lucky.
Researchers at Johns Hopkins compiled an enlightening report after reviewing 25 years of medical malpractice claim payouts in the United States. Based on this information, researchers were able to estimate that roughly 80,000 to 160,000 individuals suffer from permanent injury or death as a result of misdiagnosis or preventable errors. Additionally, in a separate study conducted by researchers at Johns Hopkins, it was also found that over 200,000 deaths each year are attributed to “never events” – major health care errors that should be entirely preventable, such as performing the wrong procedure or operating on the wrong body part.
While we like to trust our medical professionals and often think of them as miracle workers, the astonishing reality is that preventable errors and negligent decisions take place every single day in health care facilities across the country. As a result, medical malpractice lawyers play a crucial rule in America’s legal system.
What do medical malpractice attorneys do?
The ultimate role of medical malpractice attorneys is to obtain compensation for victims or their families by proving that the medical decisions made and/or treatments administered were below the accepted medical standard of care. As much as we may not like to admit it, negative outcomes happen in the medical world. Severe birth complications can happen, and not everyone’s cancer can be cured. However, medical malpractice occurs when a medical professional is negligent, resulting in injury to the patient.
An experienced medical malpractice attorney can help you take all of the necessary steps to file a lawsuit. Once the existence of a doctor-patient relationship has been confirmed, a medical expert will then review the details of the case to prove that negligence took place. Whether a routine diagnostic test was never administered or a wrong procedure was performed, a medical expert will have the proficiency to know how the case should have been handled.
Once all of the evidence has been collected, a medical malpractice attorney will then help you pursue the best plan of action. Since many of these cases are both costly and lengthy, it may make sense to reach a settlement out of court in certain instances. A medical malpractice attorney will be able to advise on whether or not a case should be taken to court, and what type of settlement you should seek.
How are medical malpractice attorneys paid?
Medical malpractice attorneys are highly educated in taking legal action on medical matters, so their hourly rates can range anywhere from $200 to $600 per hour of work. However, for the vast majority of medical malpractice cases, contingency fee arrangements tend to be the most popular form of payment. Essentially, this means that the attorney will receive an agreed upon percentage of the financial recovery obtained.
How quickly do I need to hire a medical malpractice attorney?
As with most legal matters, taking action as soon as possible is always best. However, rules and regulations have been put into place so that you don’t have to rush to an attorney’s office as soon as you or your loved one get out of surgery. The state of Pennsylvania has a two-year statute of limitations. This means that you have two years to pursue legal action once an injury is discovered.
To speak with an experienced medical malpractice attorney in Pennsylvania, contact Ross Feller Casey today.