Medical Malpractice Claims in Atlanta, Georgia
We regularly place our lives in the hands of doctors, nurses, and other healthcare professionals. When that trust is violated, the results can be devastating to you and your family. Unfortunately, medical errors occur all too often in our country, leading to life-altering injuries that could easily have been avoided. These injuries frequently force you and your family to face a variety of financial, emotional, and medical hardships that may last for years. Fortunately, you are not alone. The Atlanta medical malpractice lawyer at Robbins & Associates, PC is here to help you and your loved ones through this difficult time.
You have rights and our attorney is prepared to fight aggressively to protect those rights so that you can receive the compensation necessary to move on with your life. Let us focus on the details of your case so that you can direct all of your time and energy to getting better.
What is Medical Malpractice?
Medical malpractice occurs when a healthcare provider fails to provide treatment commensurate with the accepted standards established by the medical field, resulting in injury to the patient. A variety of parties can be held responsible for negligence in medical malpractice claims, including:
- Medical technicians
- Hospital staff
Often, injuries resulting from medical malpractice are catastrophic, requiring additional medical treatment, long term care, and a lifetime of complications. In severe cases, these errors can result in death.
Medical Malpractice claims include but are not limited to:
- Birth injuries
- Brain injuries
- Failure to diagnose cancer
- Surgical errors
- Defective orthopedic implants
- Medication errors
- Emergency room errors
Medical Malpractice is a Complex Area of Law
Medical malpractice claims are highly complex and require the assistance of an attorney with a great deal of experience in this area of law. Your lawyer will need to be able to evaluate medical records and interview expert witnesses in order to prove negligence. Also, if there were multiple medical professionals involved in your treatment, your lawyer will need to be able to determine the appropriate parties to hold accountable for your injuries. These cases often take a great deal of time to prepare, so it is important that you act quickly to give our attorney as much time as possible to gather evidence before filing deadlines approach.
When you meet with a medical malpractice attorney at Robbins & Associates, PC, bring as much documentation as you can, including medical records, correspondence, forms, photos and any applicable notes. Your attorney will discuss the case with you and help determine the best course of action.
The burden of proof in a medical malpractice claim in Georgia is on you. In other words, you are responsible for proving that the healthcare professional acted negligently. The doctor, nurse, or hospital does not have to demonstrate that your care was administered properly; they just have to demonstrate that you did not successfully prove your case. Fortunately, the standard by which fault must be proven is only a preponderance of the evidence, which means that you must prove that it was more likely than not that negligence occurred and caused your injury.
Elements Needed to Prove Medical Malpractice in Georgia
There are four elements that you must prove in order to successfully win a medical malpractice claim in Georgia:
- A duty was owed – This is generally the easiest element to prove. By law, there is a duty of care owed to you based on the traditional doctor-patient relationship. The medical professional has a duty to provide you with a level of care commensurate with the skill level that any reasonable doctor would have displayed under the same circumstances.
- This duty was breached – You must also be able to prove that the level of care you received did not meet the standards established by the medical profession. In some cases, such as when a surgical error causes an instrument to be left inside your body after surgery, this may be easy to prove. However, in most cases this element can be much more difficult to prove, and you will need medical experts to testify on your behalf who can demonstrate that this duty was breached.
- The breach caused injury – Since medical malpractice is a type of personal injury case, you must prove that the medical professional’s negligent actions directly caused you to suffer an injury. In some cases, such as when you develop an infection from a surgical device left in your body, this may be easy to prove. But often, it can be complicated to demonstrate that this breach of duty resulted in an injury. For example, if a doctor failed to diagnose cancer in a timely manner, you must prove that this delayed diagnosis caused your condition to become worse or the treatment to be more painful.
- Damages were suffered – In order to receive compensation, you must also prove that you suffered damages as a result of the injury. Common damages in a medical malpractice case include increased medical expenses, lost wages, emotional distress, or pain and suffering.
Medical malpractice occurs when a professional health care provider departs from a standard of care used by other professionals with similar training and experience, resulting in harm to a patient. Providers include doctors, nurses, medical technicians, dentists, hospitals or hospital workers.
Common questions about medical malpractice in Georgia
What should I do if I think I have a medical malpractice claim?
Contact a lawyer who experienced in representing victims of medical malpractice in Georgia as soon as possible. If possible, obtain your medical records and bring them to your first meeting with the attorney. There are time limits governing how long someone may wait to bring a medical malpractice claim, so time is of the essence.
If I signed an informed consent before a procedure, can I still take action against my physician if the results were harmful to me?
Yes. Signing a consent form does not protect a physician against negligence. If you can prove that your doctor did not follow the applicable standard of care during the procedure, and you were injured as a result of the procedure, you may have a valid claim. If the physician performed procedures beyond those to which you consented and those additional procedures caused you harm, you may also have a claim.
The experienced Atlanta medical malpractice attorney at Robbins & Associates, PC can review your case and determine what course of action to take.
What are some examples of medical malpractice?
Not only can doctors be sued for medical malpractice, so can nurses, pharmacists, anesthesiologists, hospitals, physicians’ assistants, emergency medical technicians, and virtually all other health professionals. State laws determine exactly who can be sued. Examples of medical negligence include:
- Surgical errors
- Medication errors
- Failure to give follow-up care
- Birth injuries
- Nursing home abuse
- Failure to diagnose cancer or heart attack
- Emergency room errors
Medication Error Claims
For many people, pharmaceutical products are a crucial means to helping regulate serious health conditions that would otherwise place our lives in danger. We trust that our doctors, nurses, pharmacists, and other healthcare professionals will take great care to ensure that we receive the proper type and dosage of medication necessary to control our medical issues. Unfortunately, this is not always the case.
When medication errors occur, they can have devastating consequences for you and your loved ones. If you have suffered an injury due to a medication error, the Atlanta medical malpractice lawyer at Robbins & Associates, PC is here to help you receive the compensation you deserve.
Our firm has been fighting for the rights of injured victims just like you since 1978. We have seen firsthand the tragedies that result when healthcare professionals fail to provide adequate care to their patients, and we are committed to standing by your side through the entire process so that the negligent parties will be held accountable for your damages.
Causes of Medication Errors
According to the American Hospital Association, the following situations are typical causes for medication errors:
- Failure to obtain a patient’s complete medical history, including allergies, other medications, previous diagnoses and lab results
- Miscommunication of drug orders due to poor handwriting, confusion between similar names, misuse of zeros and decimal points, confusion of metric and other dosing units and improper abbreviations
- Failure to administer medication
- Failure to prescribe the proper medication
- Administering the wrong amount of medication, resulting in a drug overdose
- Administering medication incorrectly
Medication Error Claims are Extremely Complex
Medication error claims are highly complex and require the assistance of an experienced medical malpractice attorney. Your lawyer will need to evaluate medical records and possess a thorough understanding of the medications you were taking. Medical experts will need to be interviewed to provide conclusive proof that your injury was in fact caused by a medication error. Your attorney must also be able to identify all appropriate parties to hold accountable for your injuries.
At Robbins & Associates, PC, we have handled all types of medication error claims, including cases involving:
- Prescription errors
- Drug interaction mistakes
- Anesthesia errors
Our lawyer will always be here to answer any questions you may have, and we will fight aggressively until we have secured the compensation you need to move on with your life.
Atlanta medical malpractice lawyer Laurie Robbins has more than 30 years of experience handling these complex cases. She knows the medical issues involved, and she knows the laws which apply to your claim. Ms. Robbins works closely with medical experts in a variety of specialties who will analyze your case and provide testimony demonstrating that your injuries were the result of medical negligence.
If you think you have been the victim of medical malpractice in Atlanta or anywhere in Georgia, please contact our experienced Atlanta medical malpractice lawyer today to schedule your free consultation.