Was it negligence or malpractice?

medical malpractice lawyerIf you work in the healthcare field or even a car dealership Langely it can be very important to understand the difference between medical negligence and medical malpractice. The rule is if you are a licensed healthcare professional you could be accused of either or both. The tendency is for complainants to claim malpractice, but it may have been negligence. According to a chicago medical malpractice lawyer, malpractice could see you lose your license, while negligence is typically required to have disciplinary punishments only.


What is medical negligence

Medical negligence is defined by the lack of due procedure in an instance where common sense and common training makes one aware of its necessity. For example, if a doctor is rushed and forgets to properly sterilize their instruments resulting in an infection – this would be most often termed as medical negligence. The same would hold true if a doctor did not call for certain testing based on an individual’s symptoms as they did not think they were related to a risk for a serious disease or illness.


What is medical malpractice

Medical malpractice is when negligence is performed with the intent to harm. Looking at the two examples from before there is one change you could make to each that would turn them into acts of medical malpractice. If the doctor chooses not to sterilize their instruments because they either don’t approve/like the patient, or are trying to save money on supplies – this would be medical malpractice. If tests were not performed because they were either time consuming, the doctor felt the person deserved the disease, or thought the person was too old or ill for another test to do any good – and does not give the person the choice to accept or turn down the test – that is medical malpractice.

Contact your cities medical malpractice lawyer.

When is it one or the other?

The two terms are often used interchangeably even though they are very different. What determines which happened in each case is going to come down to intent. This is what can make providing medical malpractice difficult. It is on the claimant to prove the intent of the healthcare professional was to harm.

My hospital defended me against malpractice and is now suing me for negligence, can they do that?

This is a common and unfortunate question. In this day and age it isn’t unusual for claimants to sue a facility and healthcare professional for medical malpractice and end up needing to hire a personal injury attorney in Los Angeles. Your employer will have you covered under their liability policy, which then pays for the defense. What can be shocking is how often a facility that has successfully defended a practitioner against a charge of medical malpractice will then turn around and sue that practitioner for negligence.

suing for negligence

What the facility liability policy covers

You have to remember that the liability policy and lawyers for a facility will always place the wellbeing of the facility first. They have a vested need in protecting themselves from charges of medical malpractice. They also have a need to protect their bottom line, which means recovering the cost of that defense. If they can prove that they incurred those costs due to your professional negligence then you must pay restitution. While the good news is that a determination of negligence may not cause you to lose your license, the cost of restitution may cost you everything you have in your life.


The best practice is to also carry your own

This is beginning to happen more often as insurance dollars and funding become harder to come by for major facilities and institutions. Your best practice is to always carry your own professional liability insurance. It is a remarkably affordable thing to do and it may just be what you need to save your life and career. You should also make it a habit to insure that all of your recording is done to state and federal standards, especially if they exceed facility standards. Keeping a record of your own is a possibility, but you need to talk to a lawyer about how to set that up so you are not violating privacy and confidentiality laws too. If this seems like a lot of work it isn’t, not when you think about what might happen should your facility take you to court.