California Medical Malpractice Cases In a Nutshell.

Medical Malpractice in a nutshell

For those of you who do not know what a medical malpractice case is, I will describe it to you in basic language. Medial malpractice is the failure of a doctor to perform like other similar doctors in the community, and this failure causes you damages.

Medical malpractice usually includes health care providers such as doctors, hospitals, nurses, dentists, or anyone providing health care services.

Some examples of medical malpractice would be: a doctor operating on the wrong body part; a doctor removing the wrong body part; failure to diagnose a medical condition; misdiagnosis; prescribing the wrong medications; leaving tools or devices in the body after surgery; negligently performing surgery; failing to warn about possible ramifications of a medical procedure, and so on.

A medical malpractice victim is entitled to special and general damages. Special damages are out of pocket losses such as medical bills, loss of wages, prescriptions, travel to and from a medical provider and so on. General Damages are pain and suffering, loss of enjoyment of life, emotional distress, etc.

Since the 1970’s, the State of California has limited or capped general damages in medical malpractice cases to $250,000 no matter what your loss is.

I know that the $250,000 cap on general damages is absurd and way behind the times. I may discuss how unfair this cap is in another article. The purpose of the article is simply to discuss a California medical malpractice case.

If you are a victim of medical malpractice in California you can basically recover your out of pocket loss, and up to $250,000 in general damages. Because of the $250,000 cap in California, many personal injury attorneys have stopped doing medical malpractice cases because they are expensive to prosecute.

Victims of medical malpractice in California have only 1 year from the time they knew or should have known about the malpractice to sue. Furthermore, they must notify the health care provider in writing of the fact that they are going to sue, before they can sue.

For this reason it is important for medical malpractice victims to find a medical malpractice personal injury attorney such as myself, as soon as possible.

To prove that there was medical malpractice in a particular case, an expert witness is almost always necessary. In most medical malpractice cases, the expert needs to be retained at the outset of the case, to determine if there was indeed a failure of a healthcare provider to act as similar providers in the community would have.

In closing, if you feel like you may be the victim of medical malpractice, call my office forthwith at 800-816-1529 ext. 1. I will give you a free consultation.

By California Medical Malpractice Personal Injury Attorney Norman Gregory Fernandez, © 2009


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