As much as we would like for physicians to be able to mend all injuries and cure all illnesses, there is only so much they can do for a patient given the knowledge and experience they have along with the current medicines, procedures, etc. that are available. The truth is, society relies on doctors to “make everyone better” and when they don’t meet the expectations patients have set for them, they want to blame them for making a mistake. Now, there are instances where doctors do, in fact, mess up but there are also times when they have done their due diligence to help a patient achieve the wellness they desire but are unable to do so.
So, how does a patient who, with medical treatment, still isn’t getting any better or has begun to suffer more know when their suffering was brought on by a physician error or if their doctor actually administered the care he or she was required to provide?
For the purpose of this article, we are going to explore the difference between physician negligence, which is what we are going to use to refer to a doctor making a mistake, and the standard level of care.
Let’s say you sought treatment from a doctor in or nearby to Madison, MS for back pain who recommended you undergo surgery to help repair this area of the body. During the surgery, the doctor does something out of the norm that causes another part of the body to suffer an injury. As a result, you are now required to have a second procedure done to repair the damage the physician caused during the initial back surgery you had performed. Aside from the exorbitant hospital bills that are now being sent to you, you also had to go through the recovery phase twice rather than once and you still left with some pain in another area of your body that may have been injured the doctor.
In this situation, the doctor may be held accountable for medical malpractice if you can prove he or she did make a mistake while performing your back surgery.
Standard Level of Care
Now, let’s take that same situation described above, but this time, during the time the surgery was performed, the doctor didn’t make a mistake and carried out the procedure just as he or she was expected to do. Unfortunately, the surgery didn’t quite mend your injury as you expected and you still feel discomfort. If the doctor performed the surgery in the same manner any other physician would have done which would have led to the same results, he or she is said to have provided you with the standard level of care.
Now, in no way are we suggesting that all physicians who carry out a procedure in the same way another physician would are free from making a mistake. There are times when doctors can still be found guilty of medical negligence under these circumstances but the only way to truly determine this is with the help of a Madison, MS personal injury attorney.
Determining when a physician made a mistake or provided the standard level of care.
In order to prove a doctor is guilty of medical malpractice, or physician negligence, four conditions must be met in order for you to file a lawsuit against the doctor and recover damages for your injuries, pain and suffering, medical bills, etc. Those four conditions are as follows:
- Duty- The doctor had a professional duty owed to the patient.
- Breach of duty- The physician breached that duty.
- Harm- As a result of the breach of duty, the physician caused an injury.
- Causation- The damages the injury has caused the patient to suffer.
Now, if you think a doctor in MS has caused you to suffer an injury as a result of him or her making a mistake, contact Ballard Law, PLLC to schedule an initial consultation. Attorney William E. Ballard can review the details of the matter and determine whether you have a legitimate case on your hands.
You can reach Ballard Law, PLLC at:
108 S. President Street
Jackson, MS 39201