Brooklyn Medical Malpractice Lawyers
Medical malpractice arises when negligent healthcare professionals or facilities fail to provide the expected and reasonable duty of care, resulting in patient harm, injury, or death. All medical professionals and facilities are bound by this duty of care, which refers to the skill level, care, and judgment that another healthcare professional would provide under similar circumstances.
Healthcare providers who fail to uphold the duty of care can be held accountable for a patient’s injury or death. Our Brooklyn medical malpractice lawyers at Rubenstein & Rynecki have over 50 years of experience fighting for maximum compensation for clients harmed by medical malpractice.
What Are Common Causes of Medical Malpractice?
Medical malpractice can occur in various healthcare settings, including hospitals, dental offices, nursing homes, and private practices. Common causes of medical malpractice may include but are not limited to:
- Failure to diagnose or misdiagnosis: Failure to timely diagnose a medical condition or the wrong condition can lead to harm.
- Surgical errors: Errors during surgery can significantly harm a patient, such as failing to remove surgical instruments, operating on the wrong body part, or causing organ damage.
- Medication errors: This refers to administering the wrong medication, incorrect dosage, or prescribing the incorrect medications despite the patient’s allergies or medical history.
- Birth injuries: Birth injuries can occur from negligent actions during childbirth, resulting in the mother or baby’s harm, such as brain injuries, fractures, or nerve damage.
- Anesthesia errors: This occurs when the wrong dose is administrated incorrectly or the healthcare professional fails to monitor the patient during surgery.
- Oxygen deprivation: This can lead to catastrophic or fatal injuries and is almost always preventable. Birth injuries often involve oxygen deprivation.
Medical malpractice cases can be complex and require expert testimony from other medical professionals.
Patient Consent in Medical Malpractice
New York law states that physicians must obtain informed consent from patients before treatment. Informed consent must include the specific procedure, necessity, reasonable and foreseeable risks and benefits, and alternatives, if applicable. Under medical malpractice law, when a physician does not obtain informed consent and the patient suffers harm, that may constitute malpractice.
There are permittable exceptions, however, based on individual circumstances as to why informed consent was not obtained, such as:
- Parental consent for minor children.
- Durable healthcare power of attorney for incapacitated adults unable to make their own decisions
- Emergencies requiring immediate lifesaving measures.
What Should I Do if I Suspect Medical Malpractice?
If you suspect that you have been harmed by medical malpractice, there are actions you can take, such as the following:
- Seek treatment: If you are still under medical care, seek a second opinion and treatment from a different medical professional as soon as possible to address any immediate health concerns. Doing so will help verify whether there were errors in your treatment.
- Maintain records: Keep all records related to your medical care, including medical records, treatment plans, medications, invoices, communications, and any other documents or records pertaining to your case.
- Identify witnesses: Keep a list of potential witnesses you can provide your lawyer to interview.
- Keep evidence: Preserve any physical evidence related to your case, such as medications, medical devices, photos of your injuries, and other relevant evidence.
- Consult a medical malpractice lawyer: In medical malpractice cases, it is crucial to consult an experienced lawyer who can evaluate your case, advise you of your legal rights, and guide the process.
What Compensation Can I Seek for Medical Malpractice?
In medical malpractice cases, you may be entitled to compensation if you can prove that your healthcare provider’s actions were negligent, violated the standard of care, and caused significant harm. Medical malpractice cases have no set value, and compensation is generally based on economic and non-economic losses.
In many states, non-economic damages are capped in medical malpractice cases. However, non-economic damages are not capped in New York.
Is There a Time Limit for Filing a Medical Malpractice Claim?
In New York, the statute of limitations for filing medical malpractice claims is two years and six months from the time of the incident, omission, or the last instance of continuous treatment for your injury, illness, or condition. However, there may be exceptions.
Who Is Responsible for Medical Malpractice?
Typically, healthcare providers or medical facilities are liable in most medical malpractice cases; however, multiple parties may be liable, depending on the circumstances of your case. Potentially liable parties include:
- Healthcare professionals: Medical malpractice encompasses more than your physician or the facility and includes surgeons, nurses, anesthesiologists, assistants, dentists, dental hygienists, pharmacists, and others directly involved in your care.
- Medical facilities: Any facility providing health and medical care can be held accountable for malpractice, including hospitals, clinics, private medical practices, and nursing homes.
- Pharmaceutical manufacturers: Pharmaceutical manufacturers who fail to provide adequate warnings regarding side effects, risks, or complications of certain medications can be responsible for your harm.
- Medical device manufacturers: If you received a medical device that failed or had design defects, the manufacturing company might be responsible, mainly if they were aware of the problem and failed to warn healthcare providers.
Can I File a Claim Against a Doctor?
Medical malpractice cases are initially filed with the New York State Department of Health, which are then investigated by the department’s Office of Professional Medical Conduct (OPMC) and the Board for Professional Medical Conduct. Claims against dentists, nurses, chiropractors, and other healthcare professionals are filed with the Office of Professional Discipline.
Medical malpractice claims generally allege negligence, incompetence, or illegal or unethical practices and misconduct, including but not limited to:
- Abandoning or neglecting patients’ immediate need for care.
- Exploitation via sales of goods, drugs, or services.
- Failing to provide patient records and diagnostic testing results.
- Guaranteeing cures.
- Harassment, abuse, or intimidation.
- Practicing on a suspended, inactive, or total lack of medical license.
- Providing services while impaired.
- Refusing treatment based on discrimination.
- Violating patients’ right to privacy or medical disclosure privacy laws.
The OPMC conducts hearings and disciplines offenders but cannot compensate victims. However, filing a report helps substantiate your claims in a medical malpractice lawsuit.
How Can a Medical Malpractice Lawyer Help Me?
A medical malpractice lawyer can help in the following ways:
- Advise you: A lawyer can review your case, determine whether it is viable, and provide guidance on how to proceed.
- Investigate your case: A medical malpractice lawyer can investigate your case to gather relevant evidence and information by obtaining your medical records, treatment plans, interviewing witnesses, and consulting others to prove your standard of care was negligent.
- Hire experts: To prove medical malpractice cases, lawyers turn to outside medical experts to evaluate your case and offer expert testimony supporting your claim.
- Represent you: If negotiations fail, a settlement cannot be reached, and your case proceeds to trial, your lawyer can represent you and present your case in court.
Having a skilled medical malpractice lawyer on your side with extensive knowledge significantly improves your chances of winning your case and obtaining compensation for the harm you have suffered. Rubenstein & Rynecki has built a solid reputation and successful track record of obtaining millions of dollars for our clients.
Brooklyn Medical Malpractice Lawyers at Rubenstein & Rynecki Fight for Clients Injured by Negligent Healthcare Professionals or Facilities
If you have been injured due to a negligent healthcare professional or facility, contact our Brooklyn medical malpractice lawyers at Rubenstein & Rynecki. Call us today at 718-522-1020 or contact us online to schedule a free consultation. Located in Brooklyn, New York, we serve clients throughout New York City, including The Bronx, Manhattan, Queens, and Staten Island.