Healthcare practitioners, private clinics and public hospitals have a duty to their patients when treating them, not to put them under any unnecessary risk through procedures, misinformation or negligence. However, it may happen as a result of malicious action or unprofessional conduct, and when it does, it can lower your standard of living, result in a loss of livelihood, or create unforeseen complications for your life, career, family and loved-ones. In such cases, it is important to remember that you have a right to hold the guilty party responsible for their actions and outcomes, so let’s find out more about what constitutes as medical malpractice, and what you can do to seek retribution when it happens to you.
What Constitutes as Malpractice?
For a successful claim to be made against medical negligence or malpractice, the individual or institution concerned must first conduct their services to the patient in terms of their legal duty. Under this obligation, the healthcare provider should adhere to standards of treatment which have the patient’s best interest in mind. Should their actions result in direct injury to the patient, or should cause them financial or emotional loss, the patient can make a claim against the institution accordingly.
These acts of malpractice may concern inadequate medical records being produced, a lack of information being given to patients about medical procedures, administering the incorrect treatments at the incorrect times, or failing to monitor patients when they are injured, or shortly after coming out of an operation. If you feel any of these events have lowered your standard of living, then you may have the right to make a claim against the institution at fault.
The Legality of Claims and Indemnity
Most medical institutions will make you sign an indemnity form before procedures are conducted, which in many cases will waver your right to take legal action should an unfortunate outcome occur. This, however, does not make the institution immune to claims against negligence; and in some cases, retribution can still be had with the help of the right legal professional.
Accessing your Medical Information
Remember, that you have a right to gain access to your medical records no matter which medical institution holds them, and you will need to obtain this information when making a claims case against the healthcare provider who has wronged you. If you suspect that your records have been doctored (I couldn’t resist), you and your legal team can request originals to inspect them against the ones provided by the practitioner.
Contact Scheepers Pretorius for Details
Remember that it is your right to ensure that your medical practitioner adheres to the responsibility of providing you with safe medical services, sound information about procedures and access to your medical history. If you feel that you have been wronged by malpractice in these services, contact a representative from Scheepers Pretorius Attorneys, or visit our website for further details.