There are hundreds of medical errors every year. In 2019, experts claimed mistakes made by medical practitioners caused a third of all deaths in the United States. This has since been debunked, but there are still too many people who fall victim to overworked and poorly trained staff in hospitals and clinics.
Unfortunately, there is a possibility that at some point, you or a loved one, will be impacted by medical negligence. It is, therefore, important that you take the right steps to file your claim. Even if you are not interested in a financial settlement and your only motivation is to ensure the people responsible are held accountable, it’s still vital to go about the claim in the right way.
Here are the steps you must follow if you want to file a successful medical malpractice claim.
Give Your Medical Professional a Chance to Put Things Right
Before you lawyer up and start talking about lawsuits, make contact with the doctor or medical professional responsible for your problems. It’s essential that you give them a chance to make amends. If the problem can be corrected, they might offer to do it free of charge. For example, if you had a botched cosmetic procedure, the surgeon might be willing to redo the operation to avoid litigation. However, only agree to services if you feel comfortable doing so. Also, be aware that there might be nothing the medical provider can do to put this right.
Contact the Licensing Board
Medical licensing boards can discipline the practitioner and advise you on the best steps to take. It’s always a good idea to notify the medical licensing board for the practitioner responsible, as there may have been complaints already lodged by other patients.
Has Your Case Got Merit?
It’s important to verify that your case is worth pursuing before you go to the trouble and expense of hiring a medical malpractice attorney. Ask a medical expert to review your case. They’ll provide their professional opinion on whether mistakes were made that could have been avoided with better care.
Note that many states now require a certificate of merit before a medical malpractice case can be filed at court.
Speak to an Experienced Medical Malpractice Attorney
The majority of medical malpractice cases are settled out of court, but it’s always best to hire a good attorney to push for the right settlement. Attorneys have a lot of resources and can do things like expedite the retrieval of medical records from clinics and hospitals, using service providers like American Retrieval Company.
Experienced attorneys can advise you at every stage of the process. They’ll tell you if your case is strong enough to go to court, and accordingly, advise you to settle out of court for the maximum amount if that’s the best strategy.
Contact a few attorneys and see which ones offer the best service. Medical malpractice cases can be long and arduous, so look for an attorney you feel comfortable working with.