Having to undergo surgery or another type of medical treatment can be emotionally taxing, even when there are no complications. However, if you had a bad experience when receiving health care, this could have the power to impact your quality of life for a considerable amount of time. This is why many people who are affected by sub-standard medical treatment choose to make a legal claim.
In order to be successful in making a medical malpractice claim, you will need to show that certain elements were present. This can be difficult to do in some cases, especially in complex situations. However, by understanding the key elements needed from the start, you will have a better chance of being successful.
The doctor's duty
You will need to show that the doctor had a certain duty toward you. This tends to be relatively simple as long as you can show that a professional relationship was established between you and the medical practitioner against whom you are making a claim.
The breach of the duty owed
You will then need to show that this duty was breached in some way. This could be shown through documentation of the doctor's negligent behavior, or by showing that you were lied to, for example. It is a good idea to retain all medical documents so that you have proof of formal communication and the actions taken.
The existence of damages
Even if you can show that the doctor acted negligently, you will not be able to make a medical malpractice claim unless damages occurred. These damages could take the form of extended pain and suffering or the need for an additional operation.
The connection between the breach and the damages caused
Perhaps the most difficult aspect of a medical malpractice claim is showing the connection between the doctor's breach of duty, and the existence of damages. Showing that there is a connection is vital, but since medical outcomes can be so complex, this can often be challenging.
If you are considering pursuing a medical malpractice claim in New York, it is important to act in good time. However, you should also consider whether you believe you could prove all four elements before taking further action.