Experiencing medical negligence can be a devastating and distressing ordeal for anyone, and can have serious life-changing effects well into the future of such one. A person who has suffered an illness or injury as a result of substandard medical care may struggle with the physical, emotional and financial setbacks that come with the events leading up to their new lifestyle.
If your health has suffered harm due to substandard healthcare, it is important for you to know that you can make a claim for compensation. This compensation can help you live a comfortable and independent life. But you may be wondering how you can pursue your claim for compensation and gain access to the financial support you deserve.
This guide is designed to show you how simple the medical negligence claims process can be for those suffering an illness or injury from below-par care.
- Know What Counts as Medical Negligence
This is medical care which falls short of acceptable standards of a healthcare professional, and has directly caused an injury, worsened an existing condition or in severe cases, has directly caused the death of a patient.
A medical negligence claim can be made if a medical professional was responsible for your care, and failed to conform to acceptable standards of medical care. You can also file a claim for compensation if you have suffered an injury as a result of the substandard care, or the injury you suffered has caused you physical or psychological harm.
Whether you have suffered an injury or illness due to careless medical procedure, misdiagnosis, or wrong medication, a medical negligence solicitor can pursue a claim on your behalf.
2. Consult the Right Medical Negligence Solicitor for your Claim
Medical negligence claims can be a complex and drawn out process. Finding the right legal support is key to making a successful claim, with compensation worth thousands or even millions of dollars as reward. Most medical negligence solicitors claim to be experts, so it is important that you find one that is especially suited to your case.
Your solicitor will need to enlist the services of medical and financial experts to help win your case. Medical experts will review your medical records, identify how your healthcare provider breached his/her duty of care, ascertain the extent of damage you suffered from the negligence, and establish the acceptable standard of care you need. Financial experts will help calculate the future loss of income, determine the value of your medical care both in the present and future, and establish the impact of the negligence on your family.
3. Keep Track of Your Medical Records
Medical records provide vital details about the patient’s history that help independent medical experts establish the likely cause of the individual’s condition and potential implications of injuries sustained. They also help medical experts determine whether the patient had any pre-existing medical conditions that could have an effect on the incident that occurred.
As a result, it is important to keep track of all documents related to your case, such as test results, prescriptions, written instructions before tests were conducted, discharge papers from the emergency room or hospital, and any correspondence connecting you and your healthcare provider.
4. Going to Court
If your solicitor has successfully put your records together and the defendant denies responsibility and is unwilling to negotiate a settlement, the court may be your next port of call. Your solicitor will guide you through the entire process and represent your interests in court.
5. Beware of Time Limits and Exceptions
Typically, there is a three-year time limit for a claimant to file for compensation. This time period begins from the moment you learn that your injury or illness is a direct result of medical negligence. It is at this time you realize that you are injured, that you think your injury was caused by medical negligence, and you know the person or institution responsible.
It is possible to learn about your injury later than the date of the incident. For instance, if you are a victim of wrongful prescription or have been misdiagnosed, it is very likely that the date of knowledge will be much later than the date when the negligent act occurred.
However, there are exceptions to the three-year time limit. If the claimant had a mental disability or was under the age of 18 at the time of the medical negligence, the time limit will only start from the moment they recover from the disability and turn 18 respectively. If the patient has suffered a permanent disability due to medical negligence, the time limit does not apply. Instead, family members can put forward a claim on behalf of such one. Know more click here.