August 11, 2019

How the Standard of Care in Michigan can Determine if You Have a Negligence Lawsuit

The standard of care concerning malpractice litigation refers to the degree that a doctor or hospital staff member would treat a patient under the same or similar circumstances. In other words, it is a competent medical professional doing their job as best as they can in all situations. If there is an issue where the patient does not feel that a level of standard care is being given, then there can be a case for negligence. It is then necessary to contact a hospital negligence lawyer at Cochran, Kroll & Associates, P.C. for assistance.

In Michigan, the legal concept of negligence is the central interpretation in most medical malpractice cases and personal injury cases. This definition includes a recognition of “comparative negligence,” which stipulates that when someone fails to provide a typical standard of care, the damages are reduced in comparison to the plaintiff’s own negligence. The plaintiff, in the case of a medical malpractice suit, would be a patient who received treatment.

Elements of a Negligence Lawsuit

In the matter of health care, it is assumed that medical personnel has a higher degree of competence than the average person stopping to give assistance on a road or walkway. Therefore doctors and nurses and hospitals need to maintain clear communication with patients, adhere to strict protocols when administering care, and seek outside resources and consultations when they need help. In some cases a hospital can be at fault of a low standard of care if the schedule is not allowing efficient care because there are not enough doctors on duty at any particular time.

In Michigan, there are very distinct requirements to claim negligence. The first thing that has to be established is that the patient (plaintiff) was a patient under the care of the physician (defendant). Secondly, there must also be proof that the defendant displayed a “breach of duty” by not performing up to the expected standards and was ultimately negligent. Third, did the negligence cause harm to the patient, and if there was harm, was the harm serious enough where compensation is required.

Care Standards that are often Cited

Unfortunately, there are numerous instances where medical staff and hospitals may fail to meet standards of care. In fact, the Leapfrog organization is an independent group that evaluates hospitals on the level of consistency when meeting standards. Some of the areas where a hospital or physician may need improvement will fall into these categories.

Doctors can make a misdiagnosis of the medical problem leading to unnecessary procedures and adverse reactions from the patient. Also, there could be an inappropriate choice of treatment even when the diagnosis is correct or errors in the implementation of the treatments.

There can also be mistakes prescribing or administering the correct medications. Often incomplete or non-scheduled follow-up care can also be determined as below standard. One of the most common violations is the failure to receive informed consent from the patient before the treatment is performed.

Final Thoughts

There is a recognized standard of care in Michigan, and medical malpractice lawsuits can be levied against hospitals and doctors if these standards are not upheld in a professional manner. We at the law firm of Cochran, Kroll, & Associates, P.C. have a great deal of experience understanding these standards and when they may not be met. If you think that you are a victim of the failure of a medical institution to meet expected standards of care, then we can help you. Contact us at 1-866-MICH-LAW (1-866-642-4529). We are always available for a free consultation.

Tristan is a professional writer and had careers as a teacher of English, school administrator, and as a broker in real estate sales. He has gained a great deal of legal experience through his service as the president of a teacher’s union, a member of the board for a real estate association, and as the chairman of the Government Affairs Committee for the real estate board of directors. Before beginning a full-time job as a freelance writer, he was the Executive Director of the Global Business Alliance for a local Chamber of Commerce and sat on the Government Affairs Committee for the Chamber.

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