When you go to the doctor or require healthcare services, you expect the medical professional to follow appropriate standards and help you live your healthiest life. Unfortunately, not all health care providers adhere to such standards. If you believe your health issue or injury stemmed from a physician, surgeon, or other provider error, contact a Blair County medical malpractice lawyer as soon as possible.
An experienced personal injury attorney with a comprehensive understanding of state malpractice laws could advise and guide you throughout the claims process. By enlisting the services of a dedicated lawyer, you could relieve some of the stress associated with a civil claim so you can concentrate on healing.
Common Examples of Medical Mistakes
Legal professionals in Blair County provide representation in a wide variety of medical malpractice cases, including:
- Surgical errors
- Prescription mistakes
- Anesthesia errors
- Childbirth injuries
- Failure to treat
- Delayed diagnoses
Depending on the type of injury suffered, different medical professionals may be liable. A local attorney could help determine what kind of medical malpractice claim to file and who may be responsible.
Establishing Healthcare Negligence in Blair County
Proving medical malpractice in Blair County requires plaintiffs and dedicated lawyers to show that an injury happened, that the healthcare provider’s actions played a role, and that the injury directly resulted from the malpractice. Under Pennsylvania law, plaintiffs or their lawyers must sign and file a Certificate of Merit noting that an “appropriate licensed professional” reviewed the claim and has reason to believe the injury resulted from a healthcare provider’s negligence.
It is important for people harmed by medical provider negligence to seek legal assistance promptly. Plaintiffs have two years to file medical malpractice claims according to Pennsylvania law. This typically begins from the date the malpractice was committed, but in some instances, arguably begins when the plaintiff knows or reasonably should have known of the claim. However, in no event can a plaintiff file a medical malpractice claim after seven years have passed. The seven-year rule also applies to children who experience medical harm, starting from their 20th birthday.
Are There Damage Caps for Medical Error Claims?
While many states place damage caps on non-economic damages such as pain and suffering, mental anguish, and decreased quality of life in medical error cases, Pennsylvania does not. Caps also do not exist for economic damages such as past, present, and future medical bills, lost wages, treatment costs, and expenses related to health complications from the injury.
However, Pennsylvania does place caps on punitive damages, which may be awarded in instances of egregious conduct. For example, a surgeon who performed an operation while intoxicated and left an instrument inside the patient that caused severe health complications is generally considered reckless and indifferent to the safety of others. Punitive damages cannot exceed 200 percent of the economic and non-economic damages awarded to the plaintiff.
Discuss Your Medical Malpractice Claim with an Attorney in Blair County
If you believe your injury and related health issues resulted from healthcare provider negligence, contact a Blair County medical malpractice lawyer. A dedicated attorney could work with you through every phase of the legal process to help establish malpractice. Well-practiced legal professionals could also have the resources to provide a trustworthy expert witness. Schedule a consultation with Marcus & Mack today to determine what damages you might be entitled to.