Philadelphia Medical Malpractice Lawyers
You have to make a decision. It’s a big decision, the kind you don’t want to rush into, but it’s also the kind of choice that can’t wait. Medical malpractice cases are tough enough to win that you need the right attorneys fighting on your side. But your rights won’t last forever, and if you wait too long to start looking for an experienced lawyer, you could end up losing your rights and leaving hundreds of thousands of dollars on the table.
You deserve the Philadelphia medical malpractice lawyers with the 97 percent success rate. Call Console & Hollawell today at (215) 225-2040 for your free, confidential consultation!
The Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania is just one of dozens of medical facilities in Philly where medical errors could harm patients. Photo Credit: Wikimedia Commons (Creative Commons license).
Medical Malpractice and the Standard of Care
Medical malpractice is complicated. Sometimes doctors practice medicine well, but the patient still has a bad outcome. This can be tragic, but it’s not malpractice.
Other times, medical professionals do something wrong – and that mistake could have caused serious consequences, but fortunately it didn’t. Even though the doctor messed up, the patient still might not have a case against him or her. That’s because you can’t sue for what could have happened, only what did happen.
Malpractice claims require damages. But they also require something else, something that can be difficult to prove: a deviation from what we call the “standard of care.”
What Is the Standard of Care?
When you go to your doctor, you might not see him or her asking other physicians for their opinions and advice. But the reality is that he or she is surrounded by a larger medical community composed of all doctors licensed to practice medicine.
This medical community agrees upon certain things, like what treatments are appropriate for a set of circumstances. While your doctor as an individual practitioner of medicine has the independence to make decisions about how to best treat your medical conditions, he or she must make sure these treatments align with what the medical community would consider acceptable. We call this adhering to the standard of care.
Individual doctors might disagree over which medication will work better for a given patient, or which surgical technique will be the most successful. But they should understand which actions and treatment options are acceptable for your situation according to the standard of care.
Doctors can fail to meet the standard of care in several ways, including:
- Delaying or missing diagnosis of severe conditions, like cancer
- Incorrectly or inappropriately prescribing or administering medication
- Making mistakes during surgical procedures
- Mishandling medical equipment with serious consequences
To prove that your doctor’s actions constituted malpractice, an attorney would need to know the details of what happened to you, and to review your medical records. If it seems likely that you have a case, the attorney will have a doctor who is considered a medical expert review your records for evidence that your doctor deviated from the standard of care.
You might have heard of a “certificate of merit.” These legal documents are what lawyers use to show that your claim isn’t frivolous – that it you have evidence to back up your claims that the doctor who should have been taking care of you caused you harm.
Medical Errors in Philly Hospitals
Philadelphia is home to more than two dozen hospitals. There are general hospitals and specialty care facilities, trauma centers and rehabilitation hospitals. Some are well-respected, recognized across the United States for excellence, while others are known only locally.
Philadelphia hospitals include:
- Aria Health
- Belmont Center for Comprehensive Treatment
- Chestnut Hill Hospital
- Einstein Medical Center Philadelphia
- Fairmount Behavioral Health System
- Fox Chase Cancer Center
- Friends Hospital
- Girard Medical Center
- Good Shepherd Penn Partners Specialty Hospital at Rittenhouse
- Hahnemann University Hospital
- The Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania
- Jeanes Hospital
- Kensington Hospital
- Kindred Hospital-Philadelphia
- Kindred Hospital South Philadelphia
- Magee Rehabilitation Hospital
- Nazareth Hospital
- Penn Presbyterian Medical Center
- Pennsylvania Hospital
- Roxborough Memorial Hospital
- Joseph’s Hospital
- Temple University Hospital
- Thomas Jefferson University Hospital
- Veterans Affairs Medical Center
- Wills Eye Hospital
What all of these facilities have in common is that the doctors, nurses, and other healthcare staff who work there must always adhere to the established standard of care. Otherwise, errors happen and patients get hurt – no matter how good the hospital’s reputation is.
Unfortunately, the Philadelphia medical malpractice lawyers here at Console & Hollawell have seen just how devastating mistakes at Philly hospitals can be. We’ve seen innocent patients suffer life-changing injuries – or even lose their lives – because of a doctor’s negligence.
Malpractice Can Happen at All Kinds of Medical Facilities
Not every act of medical malpractice takes place in a hospital. Doctors of all specialties can make errors that deviate from the standard of care. Home health aides who disregard safety protocols can put patients’ lives needlessly at risk.
In particular, our firm has handled numerous cases against one Philadelphia doctor, a family medicine practitioner who once ran a solo practice near Rittenhouse Square. This doctor’s dangerous prescribing practices left at least four patients dead from painkiller overdoses. (You can read more about the doctor and the patients who lost their lives because of him on the Philadelphia Inquirer, or about the settlements we got for their families here and here.)
What you need to know is that even a doctor at a solo practice, one you have seen and trusted for years, can make deadly mistakes.
Getting Help for Your Philadelphia Medical Malpractice Case
You don’t have to go far to get experienced help on your side. You’ll find our Philadelphia office on Market Street, within walking distance of public transportation stops and landmarks like LOVE Park and the Philadelphia Convention & Visitors Bureau. You can also reach us anytime by phone or email, and we’ll never charge you for calls, messages, or face-to-face meetings.
Your doctor let you down. Your attorneys won’t – not when you choose the Philadelphia medical malpractice lawyers at Console & Hollawell to handle your case. Call (215) 225-2040 now.
Warning: The deadline to pursue a medical malpractice claim in Pennsylvania is just two years – and in some circumstances, even shorter. Every day you wait to get help puts your legal rights at risk. Don’t wait to make the right choice!
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