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Exploring the Defenses and Outcomes of Medical Malpractice Lawsuits

Medical malpractice lawsuit defenses outcomes
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What Are the Defenses in a Medical Malpractice Lawsuit?

Medical malpractice lawsuits are complex and can be difficult to navigate. When a patient believes they have been injured due to medical negligence, they may file a lawsuit against the doctor or hospital. In order to prevail in a medical malpractice lawsuit, the plaintiff must prove that the doctor or hospital was negligent in providing medical care.

However, the defendant may use certain defenses to try to avoid liability. In this article, we’ll discuss the common defenses used in medical malpractice lawsuits and how they can affect the outcome of the case.

The Standard of Care

The first defense used in medical malpractice cases is the standard of care. This is the accepted standard of care that a doctor or hospital must meet when providing medical care. In order to prove medical malpractice, the plaintiff must prove that the defendant failed to meet the standard of care.

The standard of care is determined by the medical community and is based on the accepted practices and procedures for a particular type of medical care. For example, if a doctor is performing a surgery, the standard of care would be based on the accepted practices and procedures for that type of surgery.

The Learned Intermediary Doctrine

The learned intermediary doctrine is another defense used in medical malpractice cases. This doctrine states that a doctor has a duty to provide information about a medication or treatment to the patient, but the patient is responsible for making the decision to use the medication or treatment.

This means that if a patient is injured due to a medication or treatment, the doctor cannot be held liable if the patient was informed of the risks and chose to proceed with the treatment. The doctor must provide the patient with all the necessary information, but the patient is ultimately responsible for deciding whether or not to use the medication or treatment.

The Statute of Limitations

The statute of limitations is another defense used in medical malpractice cases. This is a law that sets a time limit for filing a lawsuit. In most states, the statute of limitations for medical malpractice is two years from the date of the injury.

If the plaintiff does not file a lawsuit within the two-year period, they may be barred from filing a lawsuit. This means that even if the plaintiff has a valid claim, they may not be able to pursue it if they do not file a lawsuit within the two-year period.

The Statute of Repose

The statute of repose is similar to the statute of limitations, but it is used in medical malpractice cases involving medical devices. This law sets a time limit for filing a lawsuit against a manufacturer of a medical device. In most states, the statute of repose is four years from the date the device was implanted or used.

If the plaintiff does not file a lawsuit within the four-year period, they may be barred from filing a lawsuit. This means that even if the plaintiff has a valid claim, they may not be able to pursue it if they do not file a lawsuit within the four-year period.

The Statute of Comparative Negligence

The statute of comparative negligence is another defense used in medical malpractice cases. This law states that if the plaintiff is found to be partially at fault for their injury, their damages may be reduced.

For example, if the plaintiff was found to be 20% at fault for their injury, their damages may be reduced by 20%. This means that if the plaintiff was awarded $100,000 in damages, they would only receive $80,000.

Conclusion

Navigating a medical malpractice lawsuit can be a daunting process. It’s important to understand the defenses that may be used in a medical malpractice case and how they can affect the outcome of the lawsuit. The standard of care, the learned intermediary doctrine, the statute of limitations, the statute of repose, and the statute of comparative negligence are all defenses that may be used in a medical malpractice case. It’s important to understand these defenses and how they can affect the outcome of the lawsuit.

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