Medical Malpractice Attorneys in Pittsburgh
Skilled Malpractice Lawyers Fight to Safeguard the Rights of Clients Harmed by Medical Malpractice in Allegheny County and Throughout Western Pennsylvania
As is the case with any injury, physical harm caused by a physician or healthcare provider’s negligence can turn your life upside down. Injuries and death caused by medical malpractice is unfortunately common despite the rigorous training that doctors, nurses and other healthcare providers are required to complete before treating patients. Many patients may even be reluctant to come forward and discuss their injuries because they are simply unsure whether a trusted physician’s error caused them additional harm—leading to situations where negligent healthcare providers are permitted to continue practicing despite the harm they have caused.
Our skilled medical malpractice lawyers have a passion for helping victims get the compensation that they need to recover and are also highly committed to holding negligent medical professionals accountable for their actions. We focus so heavily on medical malpractice cases because we want to keep our Western Pennsylvania hospitals and medical facilities as safe as possible by holding medical professionals to the highest standards possible. If you or a loved one have suffered harm because of the negligence of a doctor, nurse or other medical professional, we are here to put our legal knowledge to work for you.
Elements of a Successful Medical Malpractice Case in Western Pennsylvania
While every medical malpractice case is different, several common elements must be established in order to prove liability in every case. First, it is necessary to establish the relevant standard of care, which is accomplished by looking to what a reasonable medical professional would have done under similar circumstances. Generally, this element can be established by consulting with reputable medical professionals in the field. Second, we must show that the individual breached that standard of care, which is established by looking to what that individual actually did. Examples of common scenarios that establish the “breach” element of a medical malpractice case include:
- Operating on the wrong patient or the wrong body part,
- Prescribing the wrong medication or the wrong dosage,
- Failing to diagnose a condition, or diagnosing the wrong condition,
- Failure to order appropriate testing to diagnose a condition or determine the proper course of action,
- Failure to appropriately monitor a patient,
- Providing the incorrect treatment protocol given the patient’s prognosis.
Finally, we will work to establish that the breach of the relevant duty actually caused you to suffer harm, whether in the form of more extensive medical care, additional medical care, a worsened condition or prognosis, and/or pain and suffering.
Seasoned Medical Malpractice Lawyers Goodrich & Geist Dedicated to Securing Maximum Compensation Awards for Victims in Pittsburgh, PA
At Goodrich & Geist, P.C., our seasoned medical malpractice lawyers have over 50 years’ worth of combined experience helping injured patients recover full and fair compensation for their injuries. We work closely with the most respected medical experts in the field to build a persuasive strategy for recovering fair compensation if you have been the victim of malpractice.
We help clients who have been injured by all types of medical malpractice in Western Pennsylvania, including:
- Medication errors
- Surgical errors
- Anesthesia errors
- Misdiagnosis or delayed diagnosis
- Birth injuries
- Emergency room errors
- Nursing errors
- Cases resulting in traumatic brain injuries and other severe injuries
Regardless of the type of negligence involved, you need an experienced lawyer who will fight for your right to receive the maximum available compensation award in your case, which may include compensation for your medical debt, future medical care, lost wages, pain and suffering and more.
Call Today to Schedule a Free Initial Consultation with Our Experienced Medical Malpractice Lawyers in Western Pennsylvania
We know that you may be in a vulnerable position if you have been the victim of medical malpractice, which is one reason why we provide all potential clients with a free initial consultation so that you have the opportunity to get to know your legal team before fully committing. When you choose the experienced medical malpractice lawyers at Goodrich & Geist, P.C. as your legal counsel, you can rest assured that you will be treated with compassion and respect by a team of professionals who put our passion for justice to work for victims throughout Western Pennsylvania on a daily basis. To schedule your free initial consultation, you can call our office or fill out this online contact form.
Frequently Asked Questions About Medical Malpractice Claims in Allegheny County and Elsewhere in Western Pennsylvania
Receiving treatment for an illness or injury is often overwhelming in itself. Unfortunately, many patients also walk away from medical treatment suffering from additional harm caused by medical negligence.
At Goodrich & Geist, P.C., our award-winning medical malpractice lawyers have spent a collective 50-plus years protecting the rights of patients harmed by negligent medical providers in the Pittsburgh area. Below, we answer some common questions that medical malpractice victims often ask themselves when evaluating whether to seek legal help. Schedule a free case review with our lawyers to learn more about how we can help protect your right to fair compensation.
Different standards of care apply depending upon the circumstances of any given medical malpractice case. In recognition of the fact that doctors and other healthcare providers are only human, and that bad outcomes do occur, the relevant standard varies based upon the circumstances and must be established in consultation with the medical community. In some cases, matters are complicated because the patient may not actually know what caused the additional harm, and so detailed investigation may be required to discover what actually happened in your case. In general, the practice of medicine is complicated, which means that it is especially important to retain a lawyer who has significant experience handling medical malpractice cases and who has the resources necessary to retain the best experts in the industry to support your claim.
Because we have devoted such a large portion of our practice to medical malpractice, we have developed both the medical contacts (and ancillary knowledge) and legal experience necessary to understand how medical malpractice cases work. In fact, we can often tell early on in the process whether you have a viable claim for compensation but, if the situation is unclear, we will conduct a comprehensive investigation to identify the actions that led you to suffer harm. We know what must be proven to succeed in these cases and we know how to estimate the full cost of your harm, which may be significantly higher than the figure initially offered by the insurance companies.
Not always. Every treatment plan comes with risks, some common and some rare. Further, some patients do not respond as well to treatment as others. Not every bad medical outcome is considered medical malpractice, although you must have suffered some type of harm to have a valid medical malpractice claim.
Many patients are not sure whether they have a valid medical malpractice case—they just suspect that something went wrong. Consulting with an experienced medical malpractice lawyer is the best way to find out if you have a case.
To prove medical malpractice, our lawyers will first establish that the medical provider owed you a duty of care (if you were receiving treatment, the medical professionals associated with your treatment owed you a duty of care). Additionally, we will work to establish:
– The applicable standard of care. The standard of care in medical malpractice cases is how a reasonable, competent and trained medical professional would have treated you under the circumstances.
– Someone responsible for your care breached that standard (in other words, the person was negligent), whether by committing an action or omitting an action,
– The breach caused you to suffer harm, and
– You sustained damages as a result.
In medical malpractice cases, we work with medical experts to establish the standard of care. Generally, it is a standard that is developed within the medical community. The critical question is determining whether a reasonably trained doctor (or other medical provider) would have acted in the same way you were treated, given a similar set of circumstances.
Medical malpractice occurs when the doctor or healthcare provider performs below the accepted standard of care. Common mistakes that lead to valid medical malpractice claims include:
– Delayed diagnosis,
– Surgical errors, such as operating on the wrong body part or leaving an instrument in the patient,
– Failing to follow accepted treatment protocols,
– Misinterpreting lab or other test results,
– Failure to get a proper medical history from the patient,
– Failure to obtain informed consent,
– Medication errors, such as prescribing the wrong drug or the wrong dosage,
– Certain birth injuries.
Call our experienced medical malpractice lawyers at Goodrich & Geist, P.C. so that we can evaluate what happened in your specific case to help determine whether you have a valid claim for malpractice.
Any medical provider can commit malpractice. This includes:
– Lab technicians and radiologists,
– The hospital or medical facility itself.
An insurance company will almost always pay the compensation if you win. Determining whose insurance company is responsible is one of the complications that can arise in medical malpractice cases. For example, doctors and surgeons are often independent contractors with their own insurance. The hospital where they work will also have malpractice insurance. Sometimes, when multiple insurance companies are involved, the parties attempt to shift blame, which can complicate or delay your case. Our medical malpractice lawyers work to build a strong case establishing liability to avoid this complication where possible.
At Goodrich & Geist, P.C., our medical malpractice lawyers take the time to carefully evaluate your case to identify all current and future costs associated with the harm medical negligence caused. This includes both “economic” and “non-economic” damages. Available compensation may include:
– Economic damages, in the form of medical expenses, time away from work, lost future earning capacity, and any other out-of-pocket expenses associated with the medical negligence.
– Non-economic damages, which include intangible “costs” like pain and suffering, emotional distress, disfigurement, loss of the company of a loved one, loss of enjoyment of life.
In some extreme cases, we may be able to recover punitive damages. Punitive damages are meant to punish the person who committed malpractice. These damages are only available if the defendant’s actions were intentional or especially shocking.
Informed consent generally requires that you be informed of all major risks associated with your surgery. Surgeons are not necessarily required to discuss every possible risk involved, but are required to disclose the serious risks. To evaluate whether you have a medical malpractice case, we will evaluate the undisclosed risk to determine whether a reasonable, trained surgeon would have considered the risk serious and disclosed it to the patient. Evaluating whether a reasonable patient might have opted for a different treatment plan were the risk disclosed is also important to deciding whether you have a case.
Most medical malpractice cases in Pennsylvania settle out of court. Our lawyers always work to build the strongest possible case for our clients, which can result in saving the time and expense of a trial. Usually, we present our case to the defendant long before reaching the trial stage. Because defendants similarly would like to avoid the publicity of a trial, they are often motivated to settle. Despite this, we never pressure our clients to settle. If it is in your best interests to proceed to trial, we are fully prepared to do so. We make sure you understand all available options so that you can make the choice that works for you.
Call Goodrich & Geist, P.C. Today to Schedule a Free Consultation with Our Talented Pittsburgh Medical Malpractice Lawyers
Every medical malpractice case is unique, and at Goodrich & Geist, P.C., our medical malpractice lawyers will evaluate your case free of charge. We understand how insurance companies work and are here to put our substantial skills and resources to work for you.
If you or a loved one suspect you have been the victim of medical malpractice in Western Pennsylvania, call or fill out this online contact form today.