We all mistakes. But when the person making the mistake is a doctor, nurse, or health care professional, the mistake can be deadly and life altering. When the medical mistake results in wrongful death or serious harm, it is called medical malpractice. If you believe that you or a loved one suffered damages because your health care professional acted negligently or failed to act, contact Richmond medical malpractice lawyer right away.
Medical Malpractice Lawyer Richmond VA
Within the medical field and its specialties there are recognized practices and standards of care. A health care provider has committed medical malpractice in Virginia when he or she violates the recognized “standard of care” in providing treatment. The reasonable “standard of care” is what a reasonably competent medical professional would do in a given situation. If your health care provider fails to follow the applicable standard of care, you may have a medical malpractice claim.
Most Virginia medical malpractice claims involve a medical error – which is defined as something that is preventable and causes a negative effect on the patient’s health. Medical malpractice claims can be pursued for many situations. The most common causes of medical malpractice lawsuits are:
- Birth injuries, including injures to newborns and mothers
- Failure to diagnose a serious medical condition
- An inaccurate diagnosis or misdiagnosis of a serious medical condition
- Emergency room mistakes and errors
- Surgical errors
- Prescription medication errors
As you can see, medical errors are often human errors. Regardless of what caused your injury and suffering, experienced Richmond VA medical malpractice attorney Corey Pollard will take the time and energy to investigate your situation and see if you have an actionable claim.
Though technology has given health care providers better and safer ways to treat, patients in Virginia and throughout the rest of the country continue to experience a high rate of medical negligence and errors.
According to the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA), medical negligence is the third most common cause of death in the United States. Only heart disease and cancer cause more deaths. Medical malpractice and medical errors by health care providers cause thousands of deaths and injuries each year.
Unfortunately medical treatment doesn’t always work. Sometimes conditions are incurable, or medical treatment was sought too late. Experiencing a bad outcome, however, isn’t enough to have a Virginia medical malpractice lawsuit. Nor is dealing with a doctor who has a terrible bed side manner. Rude behavior is not medical malpractice.
You should contact a Richmond medical malpractice attorney if you believe that your health care provider’s negligence caused you further harm. A bad outcome is one sign. Other signs are when your current health care provider tells you that you have received negligent medical care from a past provider or when your current health care provider tells you they made a mistake in diagnosing you or performing a procedure. Some doctors hope that an apology right away will persuade a patient to not file a medical malpractice claim.
Yes, it is difficult to win a medical malpractice lawsuit in Virginia and elsewhere.
As a general rule, you need a medical provider to state that your doctor breached the standard of care and caused your injury to win a claim for medical malpractice in Virginia. There are exceptions to this rule, but you should not take a chance. Having a medical expert is critical to winning your case. In most cases you need to have more than one medical expert on your side.
Finding a medical expert may be difficult and expensive. Doctors do not like to criticize or testify against other doctors in medical malpractice claims. They worry that they’ll be next. This makes it difficult to find medical experts who will support the plaintiff’s medical negligence action.
When you do find medical experts who will review your claim and testify on your behalf, it can get expensive. You may need multiple experts, each of whom will charge you for their time and expertise. Think about how much health care cost! The same is true in medical negligence actions. It can cost tens of thousands of dollars to prepare and try a case.
In addition, there are limits on how much money you can recover in a Virginia medical malpractice action. As of July 1, 2016 the most you can recover for medical malpractice in Virginia is $2.25 million. That cap increases each year. In July 2030 the total damages recoverable in a medical malpractice action will be $2.95 million. While it may seem like a lot of money, these amounts are small when you consider that most medical malpractice victims will require extensive medical care for the rest of their lives.
The Virginia medical malpractice cap limits the total amount you can recover for injury or death caused by medical negligence no matter how many defendants. For example you may allege that your nurse, hospital, and surgeon committed medical malpractice during your operation. Even if you prevail against all three defendants, you will be limited to recovering the amount provided in the med mal cap for the year you were injured.
If your case goes to trial the judge will not tell the jury about the medical malpractice cap. Because of this, the jury often returns a verdict for more than the cap amount. When this happens, the judge will reduce the verdict and enter judgement equal to the statutory cap.
In Virginia punitive damages are limited to $350,000 per case and included in the medical malpractice cap. So even if the medical provider’s action was egregious and grossly negligent, there is still a limit on how much you can recover in damages. No medical malpractice attorney can change this fact.
Because of the difficulty involved in these cases and the cap on damages, most experienced Richmond medical malpractice lawyers will not accept representation unless there are significant injuries and a medical expert is supportive of the claim.
In Virginia there are complicated procedural requirements that you must satisfy when you pursue a medical malpractice claim. There is also a two-year statute of limitations. Your first step, therefore, should be to contact a skilled Richmond medical malpractice attorney. He will review your case, interview you and family members, read your medical records, and consult with an expert to determine whether your case has merit.
Many patients are scared of filing a medical malpractice claim. They worry that their insurance costs will increase or that other doctors will refuse to treat them. If you believe a doctor or nurse’s negligence caused you harm, consult with a medical malpractice lawyer in Richmond to protect your legal rights. You should not have to suffer because of your health care provider’s mistake.
And don’t worry about your attorney contacting your doctor. The best medical malpractice attorneys in Richmond usually hold off on notifying the physician until they have at least one expert witness supporting the claim.
Health Care Providers in Richmond, VA
If you believe you were the victim of medical malpractice or medical negligence by a health care provider at one of the following facilities, contact experienced Richmond medical malpractice lawyer Corey Pollard today:
- Virginia Commonwealth University (VCU) Medical Center
- Bon Secours Memorial Regional Medical Center
- Bon Secours St. Mary’s Hospital
- Bon Secours Richmond Community Hospital
- Children’s Hospital of Richmond
- HealthSouth Rehabilitation Hospital
- Henrico Doctors’ Hospital
- Hunter Holmes McGuire VA Hospital
- Sheltering Arms
- John Randolph Hospital
- Southside Regional Medical Center
- Vibra Hospital
- Chippenham Hospital
- Johnston-Willis Hospital
- Ortho on Call
- Kid Med
- Patient First
- BetterMed Urgent Care
- Any HCA, Sentara, Riverside, or Bon Secours Affiliated Medical Provider
- Any licensed nurse, registered nurse, nurse practitioner, psychologist, psychiatrist, or licensed doctor in the Richmond Metro Area
Get a Richmond Medical Malpractice Lawyer in Your Corner
Winning a Richmond medical malpractice action is difficult. You need an experienced medical malpractice lawyer to help you protect your legal rights and recover compensation. Call or e-mail Corey Pollard today if you suffered harm because of a medical mistake. If you’ve been harmed by medical negligence in Chesterfield, Richmond, Henrico, Hanover, Hopewell, or Petersburg, a Richmond medical malpractice attorney who is familiar with the procedural rules and with medical experts is an invaluable resource who can help you and your family recover.