Ewing & Willis
Your Hometown Legal Team For Auto Accidents, Personal Injury and Insurance Litigation
Your First Consultation Is Free 502-694-7420

Medical malpractice and the standard of care

Medicine is not an exact science, and doctors are unable to guarantee their patients will have good outcomes. But that does not absolve some medical practitioners of egregious actions and treatment errors that rise to the level of medical malpractice.

How these practitioners get to that point is by failing to uphold the standard of care, which refers to the care, expertise and skills that physicians render to their patients and which are equal to or exceed that of other doctors in similar treatment situations in comparable communities.

For instance, a patient whose cancer went undiagnosed at a rural community hospital with few diagnostic tools available to the physicians may indeed have a cause of action for filing a medical malpractice lawsuit in the civil court system.

However, that patient will have a more challenging time proving malpractice occurred than a patient who was misdiagnosed by an oncologist at a large teaching hospital with state-of-the-art diagnostic equipment in a major metropolitan city.

But doctors at rural hospitals don't just "get a pass" as they once might have. Today's physicians sit for national board exam certifications that have leveled the playing field a bit for medical communities, as standards of care are now more uniform.

The standard of care remains a vital litmus test when determining whether malpractice occurred. Doctors must act in accordance with what their peers would do in similar circumstances when diagnosing and treating patients.

Here's how that could play out in a treatment setting:

Suppose you consult your doctor about some heartbeat irregularities that showed up on a routine physical. You are then given a cardiac medication, but the dosage your doctor prescribed is three times the maximum dosage for someone with your condition.

As a result, you quickly "crash" and almost die. After you recover sufficiently, you learn about the dosage error and decide to take legal action, as the standard of care in your case was not upheld.

No Comments

Leave a comment
Comment Information
Ewing & Willis, PLLC BBB Business Review Louisville Blogs Martindale Badge Superlawyer Badge
email us for a response

Ewing & Willis
6009 Brownsboro Park Blvd. Suite B
Louisville, KY 40207

Phone: 502-694-7420
Fax: 502-585-5858
Louisville Law Office Map

Back to top