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Negligent Doctors in New York

hospital patient with doctor in backgroundDoctor negligence is a serious problem in the state of New York, with 11 public hospitals paying out $124 million in medical malpractice claims in 2012 alone. Victims or surviving family members should consult with a New York medical malpractice attorney at EKJ Law for information on how to pursue a claim against a physician or a hospital that is responsible for the medical negligence that led to injury or, in the worst cases, wrongful death.

Negligent doctors pose serious consequences for patients, who could be harmed by treatment mistakes or by diagnostic errors that delay treatment or result in the wrong treatment being administered.

New York is one of the few states where the number of medical malpractice claims did not reduce in number from 1999 to 2008. In 2008 there were 21.5 medical negligence claims for every 100,000 people in New York.

What is doctor negligence?

A doctor is considered negligent when he or she provides care below that which a reasonable medical professional with the same background would have provided under similar circumstances. A cardiac specialist, for example, would be expected to know more about heart conditions and to provide higher quality treatment to a patient having a heart attack than a general practitioner.

Doctor negligence can give rise to medical malpractice lawsuits, with plaintiffs taking legal action against both the doctor who was negligent and against the hospital, clinic or care facility that employs the physician.

Any type of doctor can be held legally liable for medical negligence, including:

  • General practitioners
  • Emergency room and ICU doctors
  • Chiropractors
  • Dentists
  • Surgeons
  • Anesthesiologists
  • Podiatrists
  • Ophthalmologists
  • Obstetricians and gynecologists
  • Cardiologists

If a physician sees a patient, that doctor has a duty to that patient to provide professional care.  When he or she falls short of doing so, either through actions or omissions, that failure can lead to a malpractice claim.  Since a doctor who is employed by a care facility is considered to act on behalf of the facility, the healthcare clinic or hospital is also considered negligent whenever the doctor fails to provide reasonable care.

Misdiagnosis a common form of malpractice

Negligence includes both mistakes in administering treatment and diagnostic errors, including misdiagnosis of serious conditions such as cancer, or stroke.

Common types of doctor negligence include:

  • Misdiagnosis or failure to diagnose medical conditions.
  • Surgical errors, including operating on the wrong patient, operating on the wrong body part or leaving surgical tools or sponges inside of a patient during a procedure.
  • Medication errors, including failing to monitor for adverse drug interactions, or administering/prescribing the wrong dosage of a medication.
  • Anesthesia errors, including failure to monitor the patient or mistakes in intubation.
  • Plastic surgery errors, including nerve damage, burns and scarring.

Determining whether you were a victim of negligent care by a doctor requires a careful review of your medical records and current condition, as well as an understanding of what the doctor should have done under the circumstances.  A medical malpractice attorney can assist you in obtaining copies of your records and finding a qualified independent medical expert to review the information and determine if you have a claim.

In 2008, there were a total of 4,195 malpractice claims filed in the state of New York, which was one of just two states that year in which there were more than 1,000 malpractice claims filed.

Taking legal action against a doctor or hospital in NY

If you were one of the thousands of patients in New York who received substandard care due to doctor negligence, you may have the legal right to compensation.

To make a claim for medical malpractice in NYC or Long Island, you will need to prove:

  • That the doctor had a legal obligation to you.
  • That the physician fell short of fulfilling his or her duty to you.
  • That you suffered actual harm as a result of the failure.

In 2008, a total of 7.4 percent of all tort lawsuits in New York were claims based on medical malpractice. These types of cases are among the most complicated personal injury or wrongful death lawsuits because of the technical nature of malpractice. Juries don’t automatically know what doctors were supposed to do in a given situation, and it is necessary to present evidence, including expert testimony, in a compelling and understandable way so that it will become clear to a jury that the doctor was negligent.

You have the burden of proving negligence when you make a malpractice claim, and an experienced New York medical malpractice lawyer can help you present the strongest possible case.

It is not uncommon for physicians to argue that your health outcome would have been the same no matter what treatment you received. Therefore, you will need to show that your doctor’s actions or omissions had tangible consequences, and that as a result your prognosis is worse than it otherwise would have been.

New York medical malpractice attorneys

The New York law firm of Edelman, Krasin & Jaye has extensive experience helping clients put together a strong case to recover compensation for mistakes committed by negligent doctors. Our personal injury attorneys can help both with negotiating out of court settlements for malpractice and with convincing a jury to award the maximum in compensation for your injuries and losses.

Call today to learn more about how we can help you recover compensation for medical bills, lost income, pain and suffering, emotional distress, punitive damages and/or wrongful death damages. The initial consultation with our attorneys is free, and we charge no fees unless we win your case.