You may be astounded to find out that the number of medical malpractice claims are always rising. In fact, a recent survey conducted by the American Medical Association (AMA) showed that 5% of physicians who responded had faced a malpractice claim during the previous year. It has also been found that more specialties may have a probability of facing a claim. This includes the following percentages:
- 19.1% in neurosurgery
- 18.9% in thoracic-cardiovascular surgery
- 15.3% in general surgery
- 5.2% in family medicine
- 3.1% in pediatrics
- 2.6% in psychiatry
Here are some other numbers to look into: Certain physicians are in more “low-risk” specialties. 36% of these physicians were projected to face their first claim by the age of 45 years, which is compared to the 88% of physicians in high-risk specialties. By the age of 65 years, the risks had increased to 19% and 71%. And what about those working in surgery-related specialties? 80% of physicians in surgical specialties were projected to face a claim by the age of 45 years.
What Should I Know About Medical Malpractice?
Often times, people will bring forth medical malpractice claims when patients have been harmed or injured due to poor medical treatment by a doctor, nurse, or other specialist. If it is proven that one of these workers was negligent, then most of a time a case can be brought forth. Health care providers are supposed to exercise the highest standard of care for all patients; however, things do not always go as expected.
You may think that the annual rates of paid claims are low. However, there are other factors to be considered about what is being done to the physician’s life when a claim is brought about. For instance, the threat of a malpractice suit can lead to a physician worrying about the probability of a claim leading to an enormous payment or the size of the payment in general. Physicians are unable to insure against the indirect costs of litigation, time, stress, added work, and, most of all, reputational damage.
Medical Malpractice Claims
The first steps in a medical malpractice claim are not going straight to a lawsuit and worrying about gaining large amounts of compensation to cover your injuries. No, the first steps should include contacting the medical professional involved to get to the bottom of things. You should always call first before you file a claim so that you can gain a better understanding of what went wrong and if it can be remedied. Many medical providers will be interested in performing services to correct problems, even free of charge.
There are many things that must be kept in mind, such as the fact that medical malpractice claims have time limits as to when they must be filed. Another thing to consider is that you should always have a medical assessment done to confirm that your case has merit and actual negligence occurred. When this has been done, you should contact a medical malpractice attorney. Maggiano, DiGirolamo & Lizzi has experience in medical malpractice and can handle your case. We will fight for the compensation you deserve!