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Medical malpractice errors are responsible for 98,000 wrongful deaths each year. More people die from medical mistakes than from all car accident deaths. Doctor error, hospital negligence, and accidents involving medication errors cause injuries to over 1.3 million persons a year.

What is medical malpractice or medical negligence?
Although the legal definition may vary slightly from state to state, as a general rule medical malpractice (also known as medical negligence) means that a health care provider caused injury or death to a patient by failing to act within the applicable standard of care.

In other words, a physician or other health care provider commits medical malpractice and is negligent when he or she fails to act reasonably under the circumstances and the unreasonable conduct causes harm.

When should I suspect that my injuries were caused by medical malpractice?
Not all medical mistakes are malpractice, but if you or a loved one has suffered an unexpected serious injury or death, you should question whether the injury or death was caused by medical negligence. You owe it to yourself and your family to know the truth and to hold the health care provider responsible for the harm he or she caused. Millions of dollars may be at stake.

For example, perhaps your child was born with Cerebral Palsy (CP). The costs of providing proper care for such a child over a lifetime can exceed million of dollars. If your child has CP you should consider whether it is the result of negligence on the part of the doctor who managed your pregnancy and/or labor and delivery. If so, he or she should be held financially responsible for the harm caused to you and your child.

Likewise, maybe you were diagnosed with cancer at a point when the cure rate was not encouraging, or a loved one passed away unexpectedly. The emotional and financial impact on you and your family is devastating. This should cause you to ask whether there was a negligent delay in diagnosing the cancer, or whether your loved one died as a result of malpractice. You have the right to hold a wrongdoer responsible for the harm his or her carelessness caused.

What else can I do besides sue for malpractice?
The first step, other than filing a lawsuit, includes informing the professional who performed the service. The professional may not know that there is a problem. Most doctors / pharmacists are honest and will take action to correct a mistake. This helps you to obtain immediate relief and allows the responsible party to correct the error before others are harmed. Additionally, state regulatory boards and licensing authorities can be a source for review and disciplinary actions. Penalties and fines, including the suspension or revocation of a license, can be imposed by state agencies and organizations.

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