District of Columbia Medical Malpractice Lawyer

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According to an article published in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA), medical malpractice has become the third leading cause of death in the United States, following only deaths from heart disease and cancer. More than 200,000 people die each year as a result of malpractice, and millions more are injured from it. A large percentage of these medical mistakes are at the hands of doctors, not nurses or other health care professionals, like many believe. If you are among one of the millions of patients that have been injured due to medical mistakes, or you are a family member of a loved one who has died due to medical mistakes, you may want to consider hiring a lawyer or attorney who specializes in medical malpractice to take on your case.

Medical malpractice is often thought to be more complicated than it really is. Simply put, any negligence committed by a health care professional resulting in physical and/or economic harm to a patient constitutes malpractice. A medical malpractice lawyer or attorney will have the ability to determine if you are a victim of medical malpractice by examining several factors that must be present to prove medical malpractice. There is a four-step process initially used to determine if a case is actionable. The elements—breach of duty, duty of care, injury, and proximate cause—must be proved to move forward with a case.

While the elements of proof are similar for every state, the prescribed standard of medical care varies, as well as the way in which damages are awarded, and the amount of time you have to file your claim. Because it is not a state, Washington, DC does not have a state standard of care, rather they follow the national standard of care. In the District of Columbia , you have three years after the injury is discovered to file your claim. This is called the statute of limitations. Wrongful death action must be brought forth within one year of the date of death. Additionally, The District of Columbia does not place a cap on the amount of damages recoverable in a medical malpractice action. And unlike many states, the District of Columbia also does not place a cap on the amount of payment a lawyer or attorney may receive from representing a client.

The process of making a case requires the lawyer or attorney representing you to call on expert witnesses to determine if the situation is a valid malpractice situation. Some states do not require expert witnesses to be called. However, in the District of Columbia, expert testimony is generally required in order to establish a breach of the standard of care in medical malpractice actions. In the District, before an expert witness will be allowed to testify in a medical malpractice lawsuit, the plaintiff's medical malpractice lawyer must offer evidence that a particular course of treatment is followed nationally.

A District of Columbia medical malpractice lawyer or attorney should be well-versed in national healthcare standards and medical malpractice laws, and should have the ability to easily navigate through these laws to help you recover damages. Medical malpractice attorneys will typically focus on several areas of medical malpractice. These may include some or all of the following: anesthesia negligence, nursing home injuries/negligence, pharmaceutical negligence, birth injury, emergency room errors, surgery errors, medication errors, cerebral palsy, and brain damage, to name a few.

Because medical malpractice law is a highly specialized field, it is important to consult attorneys and lawyers whose main focus is medical malpractice or personal injury law.

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