You may be able to file a medical malpractice claim if you or a loved one are the victim of a medical error. Medical malpractice—sometimes called medmal—is a term used to describe when the actions of a medical provider result in harm to a patient. Sadly, this can, unfortunately, happen in any community, even Lawrence, Indiana.
The city of Lawrence is a growing community located northeast of Indianapolis in Marion County. Just 10 minutes from Circle Center in downtown Indianapolis, Lawrence offers the convenience of big-city amenities while retaining a more laid-back, suburban feel. The city is proud of its 1,700-acre Fort Harrison State Park and golf course developed from land that had previously been used for military training exercises.
So what exactly is medical malpractice? Medical malpractice happens when a healthcare professional deviates from the expected standards of their profession, and when these actions cause injury, harm, or even death to a patient. Proving that the medical professional was negligent in their treatment and holding them liable is the backbone to any medical malpractice suit. When you work with an experienced Lawrence, Indiana medical malpractice lawyer from Wilson Kehoe Winingham, you’re taking the first step in moving towards the compensation you deserve.
Whether you have suffered a surgical error, were incorrectly diagnosed with a disease, or acquired an infection during a hospital stay, our legal team has the necessary experience to help you obtain the financial compensation you deserve. Our Lawrence medical malpractice attorneys handle a wide variety of case types, as detailed below.
Doctors are human and can make errors, but their errors can have life-altering impacts. These can take many forms, such as failure to diagnose, misdiagnosis, or delayed diagnosis by the medical provider.
One of the most tragic types of medical malpractice, birthing errors can happen during labor or delivery, sometimes resulting in lifelong damage to the newborn or the mother.
Doctors can make errors by prescribing the wrong medication, incorrect dosage, or improper administration of the drugs. This could also be a case of prescribing a combination of drugs that can lead to an adverse effect on the patient.
Anesthesia has helped make the practice of modern medicine a reality, as more invasive procedures have become commonplace. But mistakes can happen here, too. Examples include inadequate dosage, delayed dosage, failure to acknowledge conflicting reactions to other medications, failure to provide proper instructions prior to surgery, or exceeding dosage.
Any surgery entails risk. And sometimes we’re not happy with the results of our surgery. But not being happy with results is not a reason for a medical malpractice claim. Claims may entail a surgeon leaving a sponge or tool inside the body, operating on the wrong body part—say the left foot instead of the injured right foot—or performing the wrong surgery on the wrong patient.
Hospitals have protocols in place to protect patients from infection. If it can be proven that a medical provider or the facility failed to follow those protocols, it may be grounds for a malpractice case.
The purpose of filing a medical malpractice case is to provide an injured patient with the opportunity to recover financial compensation for the damages caused by a medical professional.
For example, if a doctor fails to diagnose a disease properly or makes an error during surgery, the affected patient can recover money for the costs of additional medical treatment, lost wages or missed professional opportunities and true instances of emotional pain and suffering.
You’ll want to work with an experienced medical malpractice attorney in Lawrence to guide you through the steps of this process. Medmal cases can be complex, are a long process, and rely on expert testimony to prove negligence.
To file a medical malpractice suit, you must be able to show either injury or harm as the result of a medical professional’s actions and link it directly to those actions. There must also be certain thresholds established to be able to file a claim. Being able to answer the following questions in the affirmative is the basis of any medical malpractice case.
Did the Doctor Have a Duty to the Patient? You must prove that you had established a doctor/patient relationship with the healthcare provider. In other words, if you overheard a doctor giving advice to someone else, you did not establish a duty with that doctor.
Did the Doctor Breach the Standard of Care? After showing that you had a relationship with the doctor, you must also show that the doctor deviated from the standard of care expected in their profession.
Did the Doctor’s Negligence Cause the Injury? You must also be able to show a direct link from the doctor’s actions—or lack of actions—to your injury or illness.
There are three types of damages recoverable from medical malpractice lawsuits:
Medical malpractice cases have a limited timeframe in which they can be filed, known as the statute of limitations. In the state of Indiana, that limit is two years after the date of the incident. There are certain exceptions to this rule, such as if the patient only learns of the medical error a given time after the actual procedure, but it’s best to speak with an experienced medical malpractice attorney as soon as you think you may have a case.
Hiring a medical malpractice lawyer can help you navigate complex legal processes and get the compensation you deserve. This also allows you to focus more time and energy on your recovery. Our medical malpractice lawyers at Wilson Kehoe Winingham have decades of experience and are here in Lawrence and ready to help. We also work on a contingency basis, meaning there is no up-front cost to you. Don’t go it alone when you can have a local, experienced lawyer at your side.
Finding yourself or a loved one the victim of medical error can be traumatic and leave you swimming in unfamiliar waters. Our experienced team of medical malpractice lawyers are here to help navigate and secure you a full and fair settlement. We limit the number of cases we take on to ensure you get the attention your case deserves. And with our free, no-obligation consultation, you have nothing to lose by reaching out. Call our Lawrence office today at (317) 576-3859.
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Don’t let the fear of not being able to afford a medical malpractice lawyer stop you from getting the help and guidance you need—and the compensation you deserve. Most reputable medical malpractice lawyers work on what’s known as a contingency basis. This means that there’s no up-front, out-of-pocket cost to you. Instead, when you are awarded your settlement, the lawyers receive a percentage of the money awarded. So not only does this alleviate some of the financial burdens on the victim, but it also aligns the interests of both the client and lawyer to seek the maximum settlement.
Indiana Civil Code 34-18-2-18 defines medical malpractice as a “tort or breach of contract based on healthcare or professional services that were provided, or that should have been provided, by a healthcare provider, to a patient.” In your medical malpractice case, you’ll need to be able to link the medical provider’s actions directly to your injury. Your lawyers will likely call on expert witnesses with whom they have a relationship. This is a major benefit to working with an experienced attorney, as it can be difficult to find one doctor to testify against another.
Medical malpractice cases are complicated by nature. This is initially due to the fact that there are complex medical issues to dissect in addition to legal issues. Also, Indiana’s medical malpractice statute, unfortunately, requires cases to be presented to a medical review panel before going through the court system, which adds another layer of time and complexity.
It’s not unusual for a medical malpractice case to take two to three years to work its way through the process. Knowing this, with any medical malpractice case, only a significant injury or damage warrants the time and energy required to endure such a difficult process.
Let WKW put our experience to work for you. Contact us for your free case evaluation.