When an injured Pennsylvanian thinks about seeking out compensation by means of a medical malpractice claim, they often wonder what the odds are of winning their claim. In order to answer that question, it is important to look at the types of arguments that the defense may employ to refute a medical malpractice accusation.
Depending on the situation, the defense may put up a viable defense. But, it is likely they will attempt one. What that may be will vary. And, here are some common defenses to medical malpractice claims.
Firstly, medical malpractice claims, despite their specifics, are based on the fact that a medical professional, hospital or related-third party was negligent in some action related to their duty of care and that negligence caused injury. Obviously, the errors that could be made will vary, but at the heart of the issue is whether these issues could have been prevented or avoided by another course of action.
Sometimes, this is determined by what similar medical professionals would have done, given the circumstances surrounding the incident. An argument against this, alleges that the medical injuries were not a result of what the injured is alleging.
This essentially argues that negligence did not occur since the injuries were not proximately caused by the doctor's actions, but by some other cause. Another defense argues contributory negligence, in that, the injury could not have occurred if not for an action or inaction of the injured patient.
If radical treatment was incorporated into the injured patient's treatment schedule, the doctor could be held liable, if they did not warn the patient of the inherent risks of treatment. These are not inclusive of all the possible defenses, but these are commonly used.
Whether these defenses are effective is subject to scrutiny. The key to a medical malpractice claim is gathering documented proof, like dates and medical ailments, which can be detrimental to the defense's rebuttal.
If they have a hard time explaining how a medical condition developed over the course of a treatment, for example. This is excellent news for the injured party seeking compensation. Regardless of the specifics, a patient who believes they were injured due to medical malpractice could at least consider the benefits that a successful claim would bring them and their family.
Source: Injury.Findlaw.com, "Defenses to Medical Malpractice," accessed on June 13, 2016