Martin + Fielding

Trusting the doctor after medical malpractice

Nobody wants to return to a traumatic scene. If it's a street where a car accident happened or an office where you were fired, it's generally easy to drive an extra block out of the way to avoid this emotional conflict. If you're the victim of medical malpractice, it's a larger obstacle that has to be overcome. The first step in building your malpractice case includes documentation of the facts from another doctor.

What is medical malpractice?

Medical malpractice is defined, in short, as negligence: the failure to perform standard care or procedure. It can mean a missed diagnosis that comes to later on or it can be something more egregious like a surgical error. Often the results are long lasting, including permanent or fatal damage.

Malpractice charges put doctors on edge, licensing boards on the defensive and the reputation of both at stake. The medical industry will fight back with everything it has, which is overwhelming to the victim.

To file a successful case, a harmed patient will need evidence of negligence and evidence of damage. This means visiting another doctor's office.

How to claim damages

It takes a bold step to reclaim your rightful reimbursement but putting together your case requires another bold step: another visit to a doctor. In Oklahoma, the statute of limitations on a malpractice case is two years after discovery of an incident. Besides your legal case, though, visiting a doctor is crucial to getting the proper care -- even if your faith in the industry in shaken.

Medical issues change quickly and proper documentation is necessary with any injury discussed in a courtroom, whether from a minor car accident or from the more serious and emotionally scarring issue of medical malpractice. The majority of malpractice claims never make it to jury. Some are settled out of court, but many aren't even filed because the records lack clear definition of the issue.

During the course of a malpractice case, experts and specialists will need to assess the results of your maltreatment and any corrective treatment to follow. Visiting a thorough and competent doctor after the incident not only builds important medical records as evidence, it sets your recovery on the right track.

Monetary rewards won't restore health, but the medical follow-ups and payment for damages will help heal the suffering from a negligent experience. Doctors are human and do make mistakes -- it's why they carry malpractice insurance. Filing for legitimate malpractice isn't an insult to their profession, it's an admission that when mistakes happen there are repercussions.

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