People put a lot of trust into their doctors, nurses and other medical professionals. Most people do not have the ability to treat themselves and therefore need skilled help in determining if they are sick and how to treat the illness. Most of the time, doctors do a great job at both diagnosis and treatment. However, sometimes mistakes happen and patients pay the price.
Such was the case for one Pennsylvania woman. She and her husband sued her radiologist, her gynecologist, both of their employers and a hospital for failing to diagnose her breast cancer. The original suit was filed in May 1999. In 2001, the woman and her husband won the suit and were awarded over $13,000,000 by the jury. This was the largest medical malpractice award in the county ever at the time. Unfortunately, the 49-year-old woman died in 2003.
However, nearly 14-years later, the woman’s husband is still fighting in the Pennsylvania courts to be able to collect all of the money the family won. Recently, a court ruled that additional evidence is needed before a final ruling can be made. This case shows that financial compensation is available to those hurt by the negligence of doctors and how difficult it can be to collect medical malpractice claims without the right help.
Medical malpractice can be devastating to Pennsylvania families — like it was for the family in this case. When doctors fail to act as a reasonable doctor would under the same or similar circumstances, then those doctors have been negligent and have committed medical malpractice.
Negligent behavior could include botching a surgery, failing to diagnose an illness or poor treatment of a known condition. In any of these situations, medical malpractice victims should make sure they understand their legal rights. These rights could include compensation for their injuries.
Source: The Herald, “Medical suit drags on in court,” Joe Pinchot, Aug. 7, 2013