Whenever medical professional mistakes result in a worsened medical condition for Bexar County patients, they may be able to sue for medical malpractice. But what exactly is medical malpractice? This blog post will review some of the basics of medical malpractice for readers who would like a little more information on the topic.
Doctors and other medical professionals owe a duty of care to their patients. However, in order for there to be a duty, there must first be a physician-patient relationship between the two parties. Usually, a person is not legally required to assist an injured individual unless there is some kind of special relationship between them. A physician-patient relationship is just such a special relationship, and once a physician agrees to help a person with a medical issue, the necessary relationship has been formed.
After a physician-patient relationship exists, the doctor has a duty to treat the patient with the care, skill and diligence expected of a reasonably competent physician in the same or similar circumstances. The circumstances include the facilities available to the doctor, the area of medicine in which the doctor practices and whether the doctor is operating in an emergency or otherwise difficult situation. Expert witnesses will provide evidence to the court on the issue of whether the doctor’s performance fulfilled the duty of care. Usually the experts will be other doctors.
A physician may be liable for any negligence on the part of the doctor’s staff or assistants in treating patients. If the doctor is a member of a partnership or limited liability company, that entity could also be liable, depending on the circumstances. There are a number of possible defendants or causes of action in a medical malpractice case; more information is available to people who would like to know more about their options.