Maryland Medical Malpractice Lawyers: Liability for Malpractice in Emergency RoomsDecember 30, 2015
One of the most challenging positions in the medical profession is that of an emergency room physician. Despite the chaos and fast paced environment, ER physicians have a duty to provide a standard of care to their patients. Those working in an emergency room can be held liable for harm that occurs because of their negligence.
There are three basic elements that a plaintiff must prove in an emergency room-related medical malpractice lawsuit in order to be successful:
- A doctor-patient relationship was created and existed;
- That the treatment provided, or lack of treatment provided, was due to negligence; and
- That the patient was harmed by the negligence
The doctor-patient relationship requirement is where each case begins because if a plaintiff cannot prove that a relationship was formed and existed, they will not be able to prove that negligence and harm occurred either. When a doctor examines a patient or provides them with treatment while the plaintiff is in an emergency room, generally a doctor-patient relationship will have formed at that time. A patient need only prove that the doctor-patient relationship was in place when the medical mistake occurred. Documentation of a patient’s admittance to the emergency room and any treatment given by the physician would be sufficient.
Once a doctor-patient relationship has formed, the plaintiff will need to prove that the doctor was negligent because they failed to provide the quality of care that other similarly situated and competent doctors would have provided under the same or similar circumstances. In a medical malpractice lawsuit, the victim must show the standard of care they deserved and that the doctor breached that standard of care. In order to establish a standard of care, an expert witness will likely have to testify on behalf of both parties. Once a standard of care is provided, the plaintiff can attempt to demonstrate that the treatment they received was below the standard of care they deserved – or, that the physician “breached” the standard of care.
In addition to establishing a doctor-patient relationship and negligence, a plaintiff must show that the physician’s negligence caused actual, foreseeable harm. If the doctor was negligent but the patient was not harmed, the patient cannot collect under a medical malpractice action. The plaintiff must establish that they:
- Lost the capacity to earn;
- Suffered from the ability to enjoy life;
- Lost money paying corrective medical bills; or
- Were caused pain and suffering
Maryland Medical Malpractice Lawyers at the LeViness, Tolzman & Hamilton Defend Victims of Medical Malpractice
If you, a loved one or someone you know has been injured due to the negligence of a doctor, contact Maryland medical malpractice lawyers at LeViness, Tolzman & Hamilton. Our team will fight to collect the highest compensation possible for you and your family. Submit an online inquiry today or call us at 800-547-4LAW (4529) to schedule your free consultation. Someone is available by phone 24 hours a day. We operate on a contingent fee basis, meaning you pay nothing until we obtain maximum compensation for you.
Our offices are located in Baltimore, Columbia, Glen Burnie and Towson, allowing us to represent victims of nursing home abuse and their families throughout Maryland, including those in Anne Arundel County, Carroll County, Harford County, Howard County, Montgomery County, Maryland’s Western Counties, Southern Maryland and the Eastern Shore, as well as the communities of Catonsville, Essex, Halethorpe, Middle River, Rosedale, Gwynn Oak, Brooklandville, Dundalk, Pikesville, Parkville, Nottingham, Windsor Mill, Lutherville, Timonium, Sparrows Point, Ridgewood and Elkridge.