One important reason to work with an experienced med mal attorney: gathering evidence
Last time, we began speaking about the potential importance increased documentation of medical care and surgical procedures could play in reducing the incidence of medical malpractice in the United States. As we noted, the suggestion that health care providers routinely tape surgeries and other procedures has certainly been met with some resistance, understandably so.
For one thing, routine video documentation of health care delivery could potentially provide a significant avenue for holding physicians accountable for failing to meet standards of care in the delivery of health care services. In any medical malpractice case, one of the potential challenges is gaining access to information that can be used to prove a physician’s liability.
In medical malpractice litigation, plaintiffs are typically at a disadvantage in terms of gathering evidence of liability, since it is physicians and health care institutions which hold the records regarding complications and errors that come up during surgeries and other procedures and the effects of these errors on the patient’s condition. Even so, in some cases serious medical errors may not even be adequately recorded in hospital records, leaving that knowledge within the minds of the physicians and other workers assisting in the procedure.
In medical malpractice litigation, the discovery process is supposed to allow plaintiffs access to evidence of medical errors, but plaintiffs are not always able to gather the information they need. Not that video documentation would be a foolproof remedy for this problem, but it could certainly help in many cases. Because of the challenges in gathering the evidence necessary to prove the elements of medical malpractice litigation, it is critical for injured patients to work with an experienced attorney who knows not only how to build a strong case, as well as when pursuing alternative avenues of relief is preferable to litigation.