Hospitals, clinics and other medical facilities are filled with healthcare professionals who help patients feel better. Unfortunately, there are situations where a patient is harmed in their care. This is called medical malpractice.
Medical malpractice overview
In North Dakota, if a healthcare professional like a doctor or nurse deviates from the accepted standard of care and it causes the patient harm or injury, the patient can seek compensation. To bring a successful claim, the patient must prove several elements.
The patient must prove that the healthcare professional had a duty to provide a certain standard of care and that they breached that duty by failing to meet that standard. That breach must be the cause of harm or injury to the patient and the patient must have suffered actual damages.
There are several examples of medical malpractice that are helpful to understand. Surgical errors can include operating on the wrong part of the body, causing organ and nerve damage and leaving surgical instruments inside the patient. These errors can cause infections and long-term damage.
Medication errors can cause the patient to receive the wrong dose of medication or have an adverse drug reaction. Both can cause the patient to become very ill. A mistake in administering anesthesia can also harm the patient.
Healthcare professionals are responsible for properly diagnosing their patients. If they do not diagnose a condition correctly or the diagnosis is delayed, the patient’s health can get worse.
These are just a few examples of medical malpractice. There is help available for patients to pursue compensation for their injuries.