Medical malpractice law encompasses a vast area including personal injury. However, personal injuries resulting from medical malpractices are difficult to prove and the case involves complexities on different levels. Both medical malpractice and personal injury share some common elements, as both result from negligence. However, there are some important differences between them.
Personal Injury Claim
In personal injury cases, two issues – liability and damages – are most important. Your lawyer is entrusted with the responsibility to prove that the injury was caused by the defendant’s negligence and therefore, the person is obliged to bear the burden for damages. It is also important to explain the type and extent of your injury and other damages. Any personal injury claim is categorized under ‘Tort Claim’. As per this system, a duty is placed on the plaintiff to explain liability and damages much before a claim is heard.
In any personal injury claim, the defendant needs to prove that a third party’s negligence caused the injury. Every individual is obliged to fulfil a certain duty of care in different situations and if the person is negligent in his/her duty, the injured has the rights to ask for compensation. However, you should familiarize yourself with personal injury laws in your state.
Personal Injury Claims
Each personal injury case is built around another party’s negligence. From that perspective, medical malpractice is categorized under personal injury. Slip and fall accidents, car accidents etc are also considered personal injury. That means, personal injury has a wider scope if compared with medical malpractice.
Finally, negligence may always not be the root cause of a personal injury claim. The product manufacturers are required to conform to strict liability. Therefore, instead of explaining negligence, it is important to pinpoint a product fault to lodge a personal injury claim. Sometimes, an intentional harm can also be at the heart of personal injury claims.
You can also file a claim for false imprisonment on the ground of a false charge of shoplifting. Despite involvement of a criminal element in such cases, the personal injury cases are trialled in civil or tort court.
Medical malpractice comes within the wider scope of personal injury law. According to a report by the Journal of the American Medical Association, medical malpractice is only next to cardiac arrest and cancer in causing deaths. The report also claims that in 2012, a hefty sum amounting to $3 billion was paid as compensation for medical malpractice.
Medical malpractice occurs when a healthcare expert fails to conform to the “established standard of care” while treating any patient. The term ‘standard of care’ defines the responsibilities of a medical service provider in particular circumstances. The responsibilities involve a set of “must do and must not do”. If anyone can establish that a healthcare service provider failed to offer ‘standard of care’, it has elements to be considered as a medical malpractice case.
The basic point of any medical malpractice case is to prove it beyond doubt that the injury suffered by a patient was the result of a healthcare professional’s negligence. Contact a Cleveland personal injury lawyer if you have any doubt whether your case is just like any ordinary personal injury case or comes under the category of medical malpractice.